Michael Poole, 69, from Lincoln has end stage kidney and heart failure and has written a collection of poems providing an honest and intimate insight into life as he faces the end.
First diagnosed in 1992, Michael has undergone three heart bypass operations before being referred to St Barnabas Hospice for their Day Therapy services eight years ago.
Michael said: “I was a little dubious at first as to how the hospice could help me because I thought they only cared for people with cancer. I couldn’t have been more wrong and I was pleasantly surprised to discover all the ways they were able to support me and my condition.
“St Barnabas has had a real and lasting impact on my overall wellbeing; they have taught me how to live as fully as possible with my condition. I have been given access to specialist physiotherapy, arts and crafts classes and joined the creative writing group.
“It was the art and creative writing group where I began to write poetry and I discovered that I could explore my feelings and express myself fully, in a way I was never able to do face to face. I have always written about what I know and this collection is the joys and struggle of my illness.”
Michael has written 51 poems to be collated in a poetry book with all proceeds set to go to St Barnabas Hospice.
Michael adds: “I hope that people in a similar situation to my own may be able to find some comfort in my words. Every poem has been written from the heart, I have laid myself bare in this book.
“There are poems about my health but also about the many nursing staff and volunteers I have met, they have all played an integral role in my life.”
Over the past eight years, Michael has had four poetry books published and raised over £1,000 for the hospice.
Michael concludes: “Without St Barnabas I wouldn’t be going out or doing much at all, they have given me real purpose and I have made some lifelong friends. And, I find real comfort in knowing that they will be there to support my wife when I am gone.
“I hope that my book will be able to raise some much needed funds for St Barnabas Hospice so that I can repay them for all they have done and will do for me and my family.”
The poetry book is priced at £3.50 and can be purchased from St Barnabas Hospice bookshops in Ruskington, Louth and The Forum in Lincoln.
Alternatively, contact the Fundraising department on 01522 540 300 or email [email protected]