Stephen Fry, Ian McKellen and Melvyn Bragg share stories of how literature can help with mental health problems.

Stephen Fry on depression and  bipolar disorder

Fry chose two poems that have helped him in dark times: John Keats’s “Ode to a Nightingale” and Philip Larkin’s “Aubade”.

Keats’s poem was written the year after his brother Tom died of tuberculosis, and Keats was anxious about his own health. Larkin’s poem was written towards the end of his life, when he struggled with writer’s block.

“Oddly enough, they do [cheer me up]. I suppose it’s because there’s an authenticity about them. They have really been to places that I’ve been, but they’ve made something of it, something permanent and remarkable. Two incredible poems.”

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battlescarred, bright, bewildered, bent, blue & bipolar

4 thoughts on “bibliotherapy”

  1. Hi, I love Stephen Fry! He has so much wisdom about mental illness and his own mind and he’s brave enough to talk about it in the open. I find him very inspirational. Bella.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. My goal in life is to be one of those people whose writing can encourage and comfort others. However, my life is just as fucked up as anyone else’s, so there goes that. I’m sorry that sometimes we have to handle things we can’t handle, and we want to fix things that can’t be fixed. I think it’s the story of life, and life is harder on some than on others. But please do know I want to keep reading and I’m here for you when you need someone to just be there for you, Know that I care and I adore you and your writing, when you’re on about big important things, or even when we’re just kind of bitching about shit that falls apart in the normal course of life. And I’ll try to be sensitive and shut the fuck up when you need someone to shut the fuck up and just be there. Like, starting right now.

    Liked by 1 person

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