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The Poetry of Everyday LifeStorytelling and the Art of Awareness$
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Steve Zeitlin

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501702358

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501702358.001.0001

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All My Trials

All My Trials

The Healing Powers of Poems and Tales

(p.93) 8 All My Trials
The Poetry of Everyday Life

Steve Zeitlin

Cornell University Press

This chapter reflects on the healing powers of poems and tales. From his family's poetry night, the author understood how poems can be used to share feelings and thoughts with loved ones, but he became interested in the role that poetry could play in getting people through hard times. The author shares an excerpt of the poem entitled The Black Sheep, inscribed on a sculpture by the performance artist Karen Finley; the concrete monolith stood in the corner park on First Street in New York City and read by homeless men and homeless women day after day. Perhaps stories and poems, like prayers, have the power to heal—or perhaps they open us to the healing power of the universe. Or perhaps they provide comfort and insight into our situations when our prayers don't work.

Keywords:   healing, poems, poetry, The Black Sheep, Karen Finley, New York City, homeless, stories, prayers, comfort

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