Can poetry help us understand what health is?
Dr Richard Smith, former editor of the BMJ, has a bit of fun with this question at the BMJ Group Blogs.
Amongst other enjoyable quotes, he cites one of his favourites – from John Kennedy: “When power leads man toward arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the area of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses.”
All of which is a long way of bringing us to some news about Professor Stephen Leeder, who will be well known to Croakey readers as a public health luminary.
Perhaps it is not as widely known that he is also a poet. His poem Encounter in Manhattan has been highly commended in the Blake Poetry prize.
I would rather be reading poetry this afternoon than the tomes I have to plough through, that’s for sure…