Over the years, we have had many positive responses to the project now called  Poems for…the wall, the vast majority unsolicited. You can see some of the snappier comments along the bottom of the home page, but here I have brought most of the comments together, including some of the longer ones. They make good reading.

The list of quotes starts with the words of people in positions of responsibility. Then come comments from some of the poets and translators involved. The list  ends with the views and responses of people who have experienced the poems at first hand and at ground level, including teachers, healthcare practitioners and some patients and visitors.

 

The Rt Hon Tessa Jowell, Minister of State, Department for Culture, Media and Sport, 2001-2007 :

“I think this is a wonderful project giving people something meaningful and personal to consider, in what can be an anxious place.”

 

Sir David Nicholson, Chief Executive of the UK National Health Service, 2010-2014 :

The ‘Poems for…’ initiative has made a valuable contribution to making NHS waiting rooms a more welcoming and sensitive environment for patients and the series of poems celebrating diversity has been particularly well received.

 

Royal College of Nursing, from their Bulletin, June 15th , 2011 

“The RCN is backing “Poems for…” which supplies poems free of charge for use in hospitals and health centres up and down the country.”

 

Sir Michael Jay, KCMG, Permanent Under-Secretary, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, rtd :

“Diversity is an excellent theme, and particularly relevant to the challenges we all currently face in building a cohesive society..We would also like to order one set of your poster poems which we will use at appropriate FCO events..”

 

Sir Peter Ricketts, KCMG, Permanent Under Secretary, Foreign Office and Commonwealth Office, rtd :

“I remember well the success of the Poems for Europe project—and you might like to know that the same poems still ornament the walls of our staff restaurant here in King Charles Street….I wish you luck with your valuable and inspiring work.”

 

Susan Elizabeth, Director, Camelot Foundation, ex-Director of Grants, King’s Fund :

“I would have loved to come to the meeting, as you are quite right that I am a great enthusiast for the project and have a personal love of poetry. I was visiting an elderly cousin in hospital in Greenwich a few weeks ago and saw various of your poems on display around the corridors and lifts, which made me unreasonably excited and proud ! Unfortunately, I am not in London on that day so won’t be able to take part….Amazing to see [the poems] in other languages and to know that you are developing a world-wide audience for the project. You deserve it!”

 

Sue Eardley, Chair, Mayday University Hospital, Croydon :

“Just a note 14 months on from our launch with Andrew Motion of the “Poems for the Waiting Room” project here at Mayday Hospital. The poems are still up, and being changed around regularly, and patients often comment on them in passing. In addition, shortly after the launch event, we laminated several of the poems together with a “please self-clear this table” notice on the reverse and distributed them about the tables in the Burger King concession in our front entrance. To our surprise, most of them are still there, one year on, and clearly have been enjoyed by very many people. Thank you again for the initiative, and please keep us informed of any new schemes or if there is a way we can encourage other organisations to benefit from this great idea.

 

Susan Brown, Chair, “Arts for Health”, Milton Keynes :

“We now have poems in more than 85% of GP surgeries in Milton Keynes. I managed to get funding to employ an artist to visit GP surgeries and encourage them to display the poems and also to do some interactive sessions….[She] has also been into mental health day care centres and worked with patients and persuaded them to write poems for us with her assistance. Some patients have also been doing illustrations to accompany their poems…..So, thank you for sending us all those poems, I hope you agree, it has been a success story and we are delighted with the results.”

 

David Hart, poet and ex-priest, commissioned 50 poems for this project, all on the theme of waiting, 1999-2000 :

“The new pack has come, Rogan, & it’s an excellent piece of work again; there really has been nothing like these packs before. …. we have the chance here to open people’s lives to each other.”

 

Fiona Sampson, poet and editor, helped select 10 bilingual poems in celebration of EU Enlargement, 2004 :

“I’d like to thank you for involving me in this absorbing project… Your idea’s a wonderful one, crystallizing many of the most interesting initiatives in contemporary literature/promotion practice. But, more than this, it’s also a deeply human, very profound return to the essential role and meaning of poetry. I’m honoured to have been part of it.”

 

Andrew Motion UK Poet Laureate 1999-2009, contributed poem to first “Poems for…” collection, launched first bilingual collection in 2005, and launched the “Poems for…” website in 2008 :

“I greatly admire what you’re doing… and am delighted that the NHS has supported you so well…’Poems for…’ is an inspired scheme…I’ve been delighted to be part of it.”

 

Michael Rosen, UK Children’s Poet Laureate 2007-2009, author of  “These are the Hands,” a commissioned poem celebrating the NHS, translated here into 4 different languages : (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“I think that this is a stimulating, exciting and important project… Many, many thanks … I am excited and delighted that my poem might appear in several languages. It shows that we can talk to each other just as we try to care for each other… I think the project needs all the help it can find.”

 

Mourid Barghouti, Cairo, Palestinian poet, author of  “Prison,” (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“I am delighted to be part of your creative and beautiful project.”

 

Hana Amichai,  Widow of Yehuda Amichai, Hebrew poet, author of  : “They call me,” (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“It is a beautiful and very important project, I am glad that Amichai’s poem is included.”

 

Chikwendụ Anyanwụ, Igbo poet and Catholic priest, author of “I Dance Ala-Igbo.” (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“Your idea is a very noble one.”

 

Carla Badillo Coronado, Equadorian poet, author of “Cuvivi,” (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“this beautiful project of poetry in public spaces …”

 

Lyubo Nikolov, Bulgarian poet living in the USA, author of : “Stalagtites,” (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“Best of luck in your noble task.”

 

Juris Kronbergs, Latvian poet, editor and translator, author of “Wolf One-Eye Hears his Own Breathing,” (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“I am happy and proud to take part in your project ! It’s a wonderful way of making poetry useful in society, outside the groups of afficionados, libraries and universities !”

 

Michael Rosen, UK Children’s Poet Laureate 2007-2009, author of  “These are the Hands” commissioned by the NHS, translated here into 4 different languages : (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“I think that this is a stimulating, exciting and important project… Many, many thanks … I am excited and delighted that my poem might appear in several languages. It shows that we can talk to each other just as we try to care for each other… I think the project needs all the help it can find.”

 

Dr. Charles Cantaloupo, Distinguished Professor of English, Comparative Literature and African Studies at Penn State University, USA, translator of “Our Path” by Reesom Haile, Tigrinya poet (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“As the translator, I authorize you, please, to go ahead.  I hope this is enough since your project is great and should not be held up a second more than necessary.”

 

Jüri Talvet, Estonia, translator of  “Though your Country be Dark for a Long Time” by Juhan Liiv (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“Thank you … and a lot of success in this noble project ! It will be great to have our Juhan Liiv … traveling to schools and libraries of the world …”

 

Dr Aaron Crippen, Beijing, China, translator of “Maybe I am Blind”  by Gu Cheng (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“Your project is turning out wonderfully !… [It] restores the public voice of poetry and brings it back into our common lives.”

 

Professor Roger Pulvers, Tokyo, Japan, translator of two Japanese poems (by Yosano ) and one Russian poem (by Mandelstam) (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“What a marvellous service you are providing!”

 

Lakshmi Holström translator of two Tamil poems (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“The thrill is in seeing Tamil as part of a spectrum of languages, each making its own wonderful contribution …[Poemsfor…] is an impressive and beautiful project, which should continue to grow.”

 

Antjie Krog  South African poet, translator of “Ladybird” by Ingrid Jonker and “I feel the string has broken and gone away from me” by Diä!kwain  (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“They arrived!!!! the posters. and what a treasure, my head is bristling with ideas…thank you so so so much”

 

William Radice, writer and academic, translator of “Too Long I’ve Wandered” by Rabindranath Tagore (“Poems for…One World” collection) :

“Wonderful to see this and I do congratulate you on a really excellent project.  It has huge potential.”

 

Stephen Watts, poet, translator and editor, helped select over 100 bilingual poems for the  “One World” collection, and contributed two of his own poems to it :

“ ‘Translation is a vital art/pumping life blood through the heart’ : I don’t know of any website devoted to poetry that so consistently provides us with the blood of language so vital for our well-being.”

 

Jayne Greathead, UK poet, contributed poem to Poems for…Waiting

“It’s a lovely feeling to know my poem has been used in this way…” 

 

Selima Hill, UK poet, contributed poem to Poems for…Waiting

“…Congratulations ! ( I Like the idea of making waiting rooms “less lonely”). Another place where people wait is stations…”

 

Mike Jenkins UK poet, contributed to Poems for…Waiting  :

“It’s a great idea and I really enjoyed doing a poem for it. In fact I wrote 4 altogether ! Also it’s good to see quite a few Welsh writers involved.”

 

Menna Elfyn, UK poet, contributed poem to Poems for…Waiting  :

“It is good to know that the poems are appreciated widely… [and] that poetry still connects people together.”

 

Caroline Carver, UK poet, contributed poem to Poems for…Waiting  :

“It is good news that the NHS are using them so well, and to know the poems are reaching the right audiences”

 

UA Fanthorpe, UK poet, contributed poem to Poems for…Waiting  :

“I hope that the project continues to go from strength to strength.  To encourage people to read poetry and to feel better at the same time is indeed a worthwhile task.”

 

Charles Johnson, UK poet, contributed poem to Poems for…Waiting  :

“It’s good to know the project is having so many positive uses and consequences.”

 

Tanya Plutzik, widow of  Hyam Plutzik, UK poet , author of “And in the 51st Year…”  (Poems for…All Ages collection) :

“[This] is a wonderful idea. It will surely be widely read and will bring comfort and support to many. Thank you for including my husband’s poem ; he would have been delighted to be part of the collection.”

 

GE, Shangai, China, teaching English :

“… it seems to be an important thing, at least to me, … to know that the poem-posters on my class-room wall are also on walls around the world.”

 

Programme Leader, London,  Further Education College :

“The poems proved very useful classroom materials with my Level 1 ESOL students (aged between 16 and 18) and we went on to study other poems. The result is a book of poems, written by the students themselves, in 2 languages – their mother tongue and English.

 They wrote some truly amazing poems and really enjoyed the process as well as the finished product…. I would love to have another set, as some of my colleagues have been inspired to do some creative writing with their classes next year….” 

 

LL, Suffolk, UK, Primary School Team Leader :

“Hello!  I came across your website and was inspired by the range of work and poets you had available for people to obtain!  I am writing to see if we could please ask for your 145 pack of poems … I think the website is great and it has helped me a great deal.  Thank you for your time – and hopefully resources !”

 

Assistant Head of School, Kent :

“Somehow this lovely set of poems came into my hands; I am delighted with them and am … displaying them outside my classroom for maximum impact. I also intend to use them in lessons and get younger students to illustrate as appropriate”

 

School Librarian, King Fahad Academy, London :

“Thank you so much – we love them!…I am planning to laminate all the poems, and have a Poem of the Week in a prominent place in both the boy’s and girl’s schools.”

 

SH, Buenos Aires, Argentina, teacher trainer :

“Thank you for your poems and for putting them up so generously on the site. I am…training 20 teachers to teach English through Drama in Special Education all over the city of Buenos Aires. We are working in very poor conditions without resources and making all our own materials. I am passing your site on to my teachers and am sure they will find some interesting materials…

 

SM, Drug Link :

27.01.05 “…We provide support and advice to drug users and their families. This involves needle exchange, counselling, access to funding for rehab and being the first point of referral into NHS treatment. Our clients could benefit from the Poems in the Waiting project, are we eligible? are there any packs left? 16.02.05. “The poems arrived a few days ago, and we’ve just had a chance to look through them, They’re wonderful. We’ve all been leafing through and enjoying them today. Once we’ve settled on a way of displaying them I will let you know. 11.03.05 We have had the poems in a binder for a while. Clients have been enjoying them. In fact I’ve just had a request that we change them over, as they’d been read so many times. This service user is now helping us choose the next selection. The poems have meant we have thought more about how our waiting room is, the message it sends and how valued people feel in it. Sometimes we concentrate so much on the quality of the service from one perspective that we lose sight of subtle ways in which we can value those who walk through the door…”

 

DW, Acute Day Therapy Service, Hartingdon Wing, Chesterfield Royal Hospital, Calow, Chesterfield, Derby :“We have displayed the poems on 2x A4 boards in the main area where patients sit/socialise on the unit. These are changed monthly. I have also put 2 small notebooks up for any comments and/or suggestions and patients have suggested poems, brought poems in for display, many of which they have written themselves. In fact, one of the main outcomes from displaying the poems you forwarded to us has been that patients have often asked to have their own work displayed also…The poems have gone down well with staff (!)”

 

LD, Mental Health Promotion Officer, MIND in Camden :

“There has been a very positive response to the presence of these rich and varied poems located just over the water dispenser in our lobby area ! We’ve also put some on display down the stairway, so you are met by poems as you enter the building…We are very grateful to be one of the organisations receiving the poems free of charge….”

 

Dr C, GP, Gateshead, Tyne and Wear :

“Every so often I get a little note from someone saying ‘how nice to see poetry’ and in fact, as a result, three or four patients have brought in their own poems and we have put those up too…We try to unmedicalise the waiting room. We have the medical posters and leaflets in a corridor outside instead.”

 

MW, Counsellor, Psychological Services for Older People, Warwickshire :

“I have used some of the sample of peoms you have already sent me for some group work with older people who have depression, anxiety, memory loss or other difficulties. The overall response has been very favourable.”

 

DG, (GP, Sheffield) :

“Thank you so much for the two collections. They are simply wonderful. I plan to try several of your suggestions, and perhaps others too. I wonder if any of my patients might be inspired to add their own poems. I shall try to feedback some responses to you in due course….”

 

JJ, Practice manager, West Gorton Medical Centre in Manchester :

“One of the GPs had heard about the scheme and we felt it would make a change from the magazines and all the medical material and the tons of leaflets we have about various services. I read through the poems myself and I think they are brilliant – some of them were very amusing. We have a multiethnic population here and it’s excellent that there is something for the patients to read in their language.”

 

Dr NG, GP, Glasgow :

“I must congratulate you on running such an innovative idea within the healthcare setting. I am a locum GP working in Glasgow. I have been born and brought up in India and work in a multicultural and multi-ethnic city like Glasgow. I cannot see a better place than Glasgow where your work will be truly appreciated. Also I feel General Practice is the closest we can get to patients hearts and I am confident these poems will strike a chord not only among patients but staff alike. …I am proposing to give the practice [the full set] as a starting token and hopefully bring some fullness to the waiting room.” [A year later] : They are being routinely displayed in our waiting area and we have received some very good feedback about them. I thank you once again for making such a useful contribution to this aspect of healthcare.”

 

BF, Umbrella, Mental Health Crisis Night Shelter, Islington :

“The clients are extremely enthusiastic about the poems, and have already selected several for the walls. They have already planned a Poetry Evening at the CNC for next Sunday, which will include some of the users reading their own poetry, as well as poetry readings from the packs…I’ve been very pleased with the response, which has been even better than I anticipated. The poems have brought up a lot of positive emotions, laughter and discussion. I’ve also been very impressed that many people who are sometimes nxious or quiet in the communal area are confident when they read the poems out to the group…”

 

The Ultrasound staff, Maternity Scan Dept, PAMU, Royal Bolton Hospital :

“We work so hard we’re dizzy,

‘Cos our waiting room’s so busy,

Our patients wait for hours

And they only look at flowers

So please please send your rhymes

To help them pass the time.”

 

MU, Seaton Hospital, Valley View, Seaton, Devon :

“The poems are often read aloud to our clients in our Day Care Departments who often have Parkinsons or are also in various stages of dementia. It triggers lively discussion on poetry learned by them and this often develops into an interactive poetry circle.”

 

JS :

“I thought you might like to know that some of your splendid collection are gracing the walls of the Victoria Hospital in Castries in St. Lucia in the West Indies. My husband is working out there, and is so pleased to be able to put a bit of pleasure on the walls. I thought you might like to know how well travelled they have become! I will let you know the response.”

 

CS, Soho Rapid Access Unit (for drug users) :

“I wanted to give you some feedback on ‘poems for the waiting room’. The service users have been reading through the folder and a couple have asked for copies to take away with them – Sylvia Plath’s ‘Mushrooms’ is the most requested. One particular client wrote a poem and put it in the folder following the death of his partner – I’m delighted that he felt able to share his emotions with the team and his peers. Your scheme inspired him, I think.”

 

AL (Mrs), Physiotherapy Receptionist, Warminster CommunityHospital :

“I have received the new Poems for… collection and I am totally delighted with them. They have attracted a lot of interest among the staff, all picking out ‘favourites’. Some of the scripts are beautiful in their own right, even without the translations. One of the most striking aspects is that no matter what language and ethnic background, our hopes, feelings and dreams are the same. Thank you once again.”

 

Dr. S El-L, Senior Clinical Psychologist, The Traumatic Stress Service, Clare House, St.George’s Hospital, Tooting :

“You might remember that some time ago you sent us the initial collection of poems for our waiting room…. We have continued to display the poems in the waiting room, in a table-top frame, and we try to change the poem each week. The feedback from our clients has been very positive, and on a number of occasions the content has triggered a conversation about an issue that has had therapeutic value in the context of our work.

I noticed recently that you have now published a collection of bilingual poems. About half of our patients come from other countries, generally as refugees fleeing torture and persecution. We also undertake most of our work with this group through interpreters, and probably work across 15 different languages on a regular basis. The collection seems particularly relevant to our patients, and indeed may be a really positive way of helping non-English speakers who attend to feel a sense of welcome and inclusion, through coming into contact with poetry in their language whilst waiting. As such I wondered whether you might be able to send us a copy of the collection…. Many thanks.”

 

LI, UK Embassy, Skopje, Macedonia :

“We managed to photocopy all the poems on A3 poster paper and they turned out great. We pasted them on little wooden houses in the park where the Europe day was organised. The Ambassador was pleased with the result. Unfortunately we cannot use them again, as we had English weather on Sunday and they got wet. I plan to make more new copies and put them in the waiting /public areas in the Embassy. I put the “Lift” poem in our lift and the reactions of the staff were very interesting! It is quite a new thing for most people here.”

 

JP. Hospice Visitor :

“Dear Mr Wolf, I have recently seen a Poems for… presentation folder within a palliative care setting which provided a great source of comfort for many visitors. May I take this opportunity to thank you and all the contributors. Are these poems available for other health and social care settings?”

 

J.U. Birmingham :

“Dear Mr Wolf, I first came across Poems for the Waiting Room when my husband was in St Mary’s Hospice Birmingham over 2 years ago and it has taken me till now to be ready to get in touch. Reading the poems they had on display was certainly all part of the supportive, caring atmosphere of the Hospice. Through this personal experience I should like to be kept in touch with your work.”

 

AK, ex-psychiatric patient, St Charles Hospital, N Kensington, London, (now returned to Switzerland). Some of the poems were displayed on the wall of the ward :

“Thank you so much for sending me a pack of “Poems for…” poem-posters. I really enjoy reading the poems. Your effort to bring different languages together helps to gain insight in different cultures. And with surprise we discover how similar we are. We feel as human beings. Your project helps us to become aware of “one world.” 

 

BB, cancer patient, 2013 :

“I just want to write to say that in 1996 I read and copied one of your poems, The “Stream of Life” [by Tagore], in the waiting room in Hammersmith Gynae. dept. I had recently finished chemo for ovarian cancer. I have continued to find this poem inspiring and think the idea of displaying poems, especially in health settings, is a great idea. I have only now registered in your site and plan to use them in retreat settings. Thanks.”

What people have said

Antjie Krog,  South African poet and translator, contributed work to the 'Poems for...one world' collection: “They arrived!!!! the posters. and what a treasure, my head is bristling with ideas...thank you so so so much.”
William Radice, writer and academic, translator of Rabindranath Tagore, whose work is reproduced in 'Poems for ...one world' : “Wonderful to see this and I do congratulate you on a really excellent project.  It has huge potential.”
Lakshmi Holström, translator of two Tamil poems in the 'Poems for...one world' collection: “The thrill is in seeing Tamil as part of a spectrum of languages, each making its own wonderful contribution ...[Poems for…the wall] is an impressive and beautiful project, which should continue to grow.”  
Juris Kronbergs, Latvian poet, editor and translator, contributed work to the 'Poems for...one world' collection: “I am happy and proud to take part in your project ! It's a wonderful way of making poetry useful in society, outside the groups of afficionados, libraries and universities !”  
Lyubo Nikolov, Bulgarian poet, contributed poem to the 'Poems for...one world ' collection: Best of luck in your noble task.”  
Susan Hillyard, Buenos Aires, Argentina, teacher trainer : Thank you for your poems and for putting them up so generously on the site. I am training 20 teachers to teach English through Drama in Special Education all over the city of Buenos Aires. We are working in very poor conditions without resources and making all our own materials. I am passing your site on to my teachers and am sure they will find some interesting materials…
Dr. Charles Cantaloupo, Penn State University, USA, translator of Reesom Haile, Tigrinya poet, whose work appears in the 'Poems for...one world' collection : “As the translator, I authorize you, please, to go ahead.  I hope this is enough since your project is great and should not be held up a second more than necessary.”  
Chikwendụ Anyanwụ, Igbo poet and Catholic priest, contributed work to the "Poems for...one world" collection: “Your idea is a very noble one.”
BB, NHS cancer patient, London, 2013 : “I just want to tell you that in 1997 I read and copied one of your poems, "The Stream of  Life" [by Tagore] in the waiting room in Hammersmith Gaeni dept. I had just finished chemo for ovarian cancer. I still find this poem inspiring and think displaying poems is a great idea, especially in health settings. I plan to take them with me on retreat. Thanks.”  
JP, Hospice Visitor : “Dear Mr Wolf, I have recently seen a "Poems for…the wall"  presentation folder within a palliative care setting which provided a great source of comfort for many visitors. May I take this opportunity to thank you and all the contributors. Are these poems available for other health and social care settings?”    
Dr S. E-L, Clinical Psychologist, NHS Traumatic Stress Counselling Service, London :  “…About half our patients come from other countries, generally as refugees fleeing torture and persecution…Coming into contact with poetry in their own language whilst waiting, is a really positive way of helping non-English speakers feel a sense of welcome and inclusion. Many thanks.”    
Hana Amichai,  widow of Yehuda Amichai, Hebrew poet whose work appears in 'Poems for...one world'  : “It is a beautiful and very important project, I am glad that Amichai's poem is included.”    
Michael Rosen, UK Children’s Poet Laureate 2007-2009 - his poem celebrating the NHS is included in the "Poems for...one world" collection: “I think that this is a stimulating, exciting and important project... Many, many thanks … I am excited and delighted that my poem is appearing in several languages [here]. It shows that we can talk to each other just as we try to care for each other... I think the project needs all the help it can find."
The Royal College of Nursing, from their Bulletin, June 15th , 2011 : “The RCN is backing this project which supplies poems free of charge for use in hospitals and health centres up and down the country.”  
Sir Michael Jay, Permanent Under-Secretary of State, the UK Foreign Office, 2002-2006 : “Diversity is an excellent theme, and especially relevant to the challenges we all currently face to build a cohesive society. We would like a set of the poems to use at appropriate FCO events...”
Sir David Nicholson, Chief Executive of the UK National Health Service, 2010-2014 :Your initiative has made a valuable contribution to making NHS waiting rooms a more welcoming and sensitive environment for patients and the series of poems celebrating diversity has been particularly well received.”  
Gareth Evans, teaching in a school in Shanghai: ”...it seems to be an important thing, at least to me, in an international setting, to know that the poem-posters on my classroom wall are also on walls around the world.”
School Librarian, King Fahad Academy: “Thank you so much – we love them!...I am planning to laminate all the poems, and have a Poem of the Week in a prominent place in both the boy’s and girl’s schools.”
Assistant Head of School, Kent: “Somehow this lovely set of poems came into my hands; I am delighted with them and am displaying them outside my classroom for maximum impact. I also intend to use them in lessons and get younger students to illustrate as appropriate.”
Andrea Lee, Physiotherapy Receptionist, Warminster Community Hospital, Wiltshire: “I have received the ‘Poems for...one world’ collection and I am totally delighted with them...Some of the scripts are beautiful in their own right, even without the translations. One of the most striking aspects is that no matter what language and ethnic background, our hopes, feelings and dreams are the same. Thank you once again.”
Annette Duncan, Programme Area Leader, ESOL 16-18 Courses, Lewisham College: “You kindly sent me a set of the bilingual poems last year...The poems proved very useful classroom materials and we went on to study other poems. The result is a book of poems, written by the students themselves, in 2 languages – their mother tongue and English. They wrote some truly amazing poems and really enjoyed the process as well as the finished product...”
Catherine Maloney, Lewisham College: “Thank you, the poems are wonderful ! We will put them up for staff and students to enjoy and think about...I think your collection will inspire staff and students alike.”
TN, Governor, HM Prison, Grendon and Springhill : “Are you still supplying Poems for...the wall ? We would be interested in a pack, as previous poems have been much appreciated by prisoners, staff and visitors to the prison.”
MIND worker in Camden, London: “I love reading the poems which are displayed in the reception area at work. I like the variety and I like taking a moment to be still and reflective whilst reading the poems. My current favourite has been photocopied so I can read it from my desk ! It’s a really worthwhile venture.”
Deputy Chief Exec, Yarrow Housing: “Since our clients have learning disabilities, for some the written word is not accessible. However, some clients have been very taken with the poems, selecting their favourites and saying how good they are.”
Psychology Dept, Scunthorpe: “One thing that has been extremely interesting is…our clients have begun to post their own poems on the wall. Some are poems that mean something to them and some are written by the clients themselves.”
MV Prescott, Consultant in A & E Medicine, Royal Shrewsbury Hospital NHS Trust: “I am absolutely delighted with the pack and will be commencing a project in the A & E Department at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital to display these on a rotating basis.”
Maureen Woolf, Counsellor, North Warwickshire NHS Trust: “I have used some of the sample of poems you have already sent me for some group work with older people who have depression, anxiety, memory loss or other difficulties. The overall response has been very favourable.”
Eliot Weinberger, US, translator of Octavio Paz, whose work appears in the 'Poems for...one world' collection: “I'm sure that Octavio would have been very moved to know that his poem was appearing in these kinds of public spaces...good luck with this excellent project.”
Mourid Barghouti, Palestinian poet, Cairo, contributed work to 'Poems for...one world' collection: “I am delighted to be part of your creative and beautiful project.”
Tomaž Šalamun, poet, Slovenia, contributed work to the 'Poems for...one world' collection: “I'm very honoured and delighted you have chosen my poem. Very grateful for your marvellous idea.”
Jayne Greathead, poet, contributed work to 'Poems for...waiting' collection: “It’s a lovely feeling to know my poem has been used in this way.”
Caroline Carver, poet, contributed work to the 'Poems for...waiting" collection: “It is good news that the NHS are using the poems so well, and to know they are reaching the right audiences.”
UA Fanthorpe, poet, contributed work to the 'Poems for...waiting' collection:   “I hope that the project continues to go from strength to strength...and to encourage people to read poetry and to feel better at the same time is indeed a worthwhile task – specially perhaps in times like these.”
Selima Hill, poet, contributed work to two of the project's collections.: “...Congratulations to you too ! ( I Like the idea of making waiting rooms “less lonely”) PS. Another place where people wait is stations...”
Tanya Plutzik, widow of Hyam Plutzik, who contributed work to the 'Poems for...all ages' collection: This is a wonderful idea. It will surely be widely read and will bring comfort and support to many. Thank you for including my husband’s poem ; he would have been delighted to be part of the collection.”
Menna Elfyn, poet, contributed work to 'Poems for...waiting' collection: “It is good to know that the poems are appreciated widely...and that in these difficult times poetry still connects people together.”
Fiona Sampson, poet and editor, helped select ten bilingual poems celebrating the EU Enlargement of 2004: "Your idea’s a wonderful one, crystallizing many of the most interesting initiatives in contemporary literature/ promotion practice. But, more than this, it's also a deeply human, very profound return to the meaning of poetry. I'm honoured to have been part of it.”
The Right Hon Tessa Jowell, Minister for Culture, Media and Sport, 2001-2007: “I think this is a wonderful project, giving people something meaningful and personal to consider, in what can be an anxious place.”
David Hart, Poet, commissioned and edited 50 poems for the 'Poems for...Waiting' collection, contributed one of his own: “The pack of poems has come, Rogan, and it's an excellent piece of work again ; there really has been nothing like these packs before. We have the chance here to open people's lives to each other.”