2020 FPM-Hippocrates Health Professional Prize Commendations

Roger Bloor

ROGER BLOOR said: "I have just completed an  MA in Poetry Writing from Newcastle University studying at the Poetry School. I have  been published in The Hippocrates Prize Anthology 2017 and 2019 , Poetry Now Anthology " Growing Old', Allegro Poetry, Affect Publications 'StillBorn' , Words for the Wild Anthology 2018, The Bridges Anthology 2018, Landscapes Anthology 2018, Magma, Poetry London and ‘These are the Hands ‘2020.My pamphlet  'A Less Clear Dream' was shortlisted for the Arnold Bennet Book Prize 2018. My  poetry pamphlet Aldgedeslegh’ published by Audley and District Family History Society was shortlisted for the Arnold Bennet  Book Prize 2019. I was  Poet in Residence 2018/19  at Trentham Gardens in Staffordshire, and I was the winner of the Poetry London Clore Prize 2019."

About the inspiration for ‘The side room at the end of the ward” he added: "This poem is based on my  recollection of a patient whose terminal care was not well managed -  as a very new House Officer it impressed on me very forcibly  the need for appropriate palliative care and the importance of sensitive end of life care."

Betsy Bouldin

ELIZABETH BOULDIN had a career in clinical medicine in the New Orleans for over 20 years, specializing in Neurology and Sleep Disorders. She said: " I have been writing throughout my schooling, residency, and practice to help myself remember the important lessons that are not gleaned in lecture, but only through experience."

She added: "The Navy Code is a fairly faithful transcription of a resuscitation attempt that I took part in quite early in my internship.  It was the first time I realized that delirium could contain an essential element of truth.”

Carole Bromley photo

CAROLE BROMLEY is a York-based poet who tutors for the Arvon Foundation and the Poetry Society. Married to a retired GP for whom she once worked as a receptionist. Carole has been a winner and commended in previous Hippocrates competitions and is delighted to be in this year’s anthology.

She said:"Both my commended poems came out of my experience of pituitary surgery two years ago. I have published a pamphlet, Sodium 136, about the experience and these poems came later. Handover is about the anxious period before surgery and There was always the sky out of recovery when I was bed-bound by complications.” 

R Sue Butler

SUSAN BUTLER grew up in dairy- farming, stilton country, a convent educated Catholic. She studied medicine in the time of women’s liberation, burning bras and flower power. It was the time too of having it all: a career in General Practice, a husband and three sons. GPs were urged to cultivate an attitude of Unconditional Positive Regard for patients. Toward the end of her career she began to reflect on what she really thought, on the gift and the burden of such an intimate connection with so many peoples’ lives. This was when she took up both walking and Creative Writing. She considers both to be unpredictable forms of meditation on life in all its grace,  pain and peculiarity.

She said: "The Work of Women is part of a longer memoir sequence. With friends I had been sharing memories of  the laborious hand-sewing we were taught as children, which in turn reminded me of one teacher, a nun, who was both strict and kind. I would credit her when midwives complimented “my” episiotomy repairs and so I came to the intimacy and peace of the delivery room after the arrival of a healthy baby, particularly late at night. That the poem became a nexus of  diverse womens’ roles was an additional pleasure."

R  Oona Chantrell

OONA CHANTRELL Oona Chantrell is a rarely published poet, with one or two poems placed in competitions including `Poetry London` and in anthologies such as `Live Canon`. She came late to poetry and now, in her `third age` has found the reading and writing of it to be her primary interest. Writing in East Greenwich, in South London, her work rarely engages with public issues, or the `life of her times`.  Rather, it reflects the interior preoccupations of one mind, ordinary and unique,  as with every mind.  She gains support from the writers of the Greenwich Poetry Workshop, which she has been a member of for about fifteen years.

About Song of the Night Ward she said: “With poems, as with dreams, we (may) attribute logic and meaning to them only after the event. However, I think the two stanzas of the poem contrast the joy of youth with the pains of old age, except that a theme runs continuously between them. The image of the moths in the headlights probably came first and that led me to the later image of souls rising. The knock-out blow in the last line is prefigured, I think, by the fate of the insects in the first stanza."

JOSEPH GASCHO is a cardiologist, poet and photographer at Penn State University College of Medicine. In addition to the publication of many medicine-related poems, he has published a book of poetry (Cornfields, Cottonwoods, Seagulls and Sermons: Growing Up in Nebraska) and has recently had on display at a New York City gallery on museum mile, Positiveexposure109. The Operating Theater, photographs taken in the operating room.

He said that his poem, “Journey to Rome”, was created as he mused on the famous lines of Keats, the physician-poet, in his poem “Ode on a Grecian Urn”: "Beauty is truth, truth beauty,—that is all/Ye know on earth." In his poem Gascho imagines Keats' journey to Rome, where he died of tuberculosis. 

JOHN ANTHONY HERRING from Texas, USA was commended in the FPM-Hippocrates Health Professional Awards for Blind.. 

Meade (26)

JULIA MEADE is an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh and specializes in pediatric oncology at the UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.  She began writing poetry in 2018, during her final year of fellowship to shed light on the challenges of pursuing a career in medicine.  Many of her poems communicate the interpersonal, social, and emotional hardships physicians face, as well as the growing concerns over physician burnout and suicide.  Dr. Meade is married to another physician and they have three children.  Her poem, Superwomen, was commended in the 2019 Hippocrates Poetry Competition. 

She said: "I wrote Physician Suicide for Paul Kalanithi’s friend Jeff, a surgeon who commits suicide after a bad outcome in Paul’s memoire When Breath Becomes Air.  The anguish he felt touched me profoundly, and I tried to give it a voice.  My hope is this poem inspires us to speak out about the psychological and emotional difficulties of mistakes and complications before they occur, and gives us the words and emotional strength to reach out when we see a colleague suffering." 

R Karen Schofield

KAREN SCHOFIELD said: "I am a retired consultant haematologist and my poetry is often informed by my previous clinical experiences. I am an active member of local poetry groups and contribute to Keele University Medical School's humanities programme. I was shortlisted for the Hippocrates Prize in 2016 and have four commended places."

She added: ""Pattern recognition" was inspired by the haematologist’s role in recognising and reporting the microscopic appearance of leukaemia and then communicating the diagnosis to the patient."

penny high resolution picture

PENNY SHUTT is a poet and psychiatrist working in child and adolescent mental health in Cornwall. She is a Hawthornden fellow and runs therapeutic writing workshops in her spare time as a member of Lapidus. Her novel was longlisted in this year’s Lucy Cavendish fiction prize and she was winner of first and second prize in the Psychiatric Research Trust poetry competition in 2014.

She said: "The Anatomy of Wonder was written during a writing retreat run by Roselle Angwin on the isle of Iona, which was the perfect setting to begin to recover from a period of burnout." 

R  Emma Storr

EMMA STORR said I am a retired GP, and an academic still involved in teaching medical humanities at the University of Leeds.  I have always enjoyed writing poetry and since leaving my clinical role, I have more time to devote to writing generally. The poem Not herself was inspired by thinking about those near misses in diagnosis that most of us have experienced as doctors. 

About Not herself she said: "I was a GP trainee when I saw this ill child as an extra patient at the end of a busy surgery.  I nearly didn’t send her to hospital and the situation was complicated by an ambulance strike at the time. I still have nightmares about it." 

Paulette Demers Turco

PAULETTE DEMERS TURCO'S first chapbook, In Silence, was published by Finishing Line Press in 2018. Her poems have appeared in The Lyric, Ibbetson Street Press, The Poetry Porch: Sonnet Scroll, Merrimac Mic Anthologies II - V (I. VanMerlin, ed.). Awards include: the 2020 Robert Frost Poetry Prize, Lesley University MFA in Writing President’s Award, First Prize in the 2019 Rockport Ekphrastic Poetry Contest. A Powow River Poet since 2018, she co-organizes the Powow Reading Series, has performed in HERstory, Poetry Live! at the Newburyport Actors Studio, and as Emily Dickinson at the 2019 Rockport Poetry Festival. Retired from academic and clinical optometry, she earned her MFA in Writing at Lesley University, Cambridge, MA in 2019 and leads a poetry work-shop at Emma Andrews Library in Newburyport, where she lives.

She said: “On the way to school was inspired by a brave and kind pre-teen boy with oculocutaneous albinism who suffered such trauma for being who he was, yet he was able to forgive the boy who attacked  him for being “other.” I had the privilege of meeting the brave boy and providing vision rehabilitation services for him at a tertiary eye care facility in New England." 

rowena-warwick med-2

ROWENA WARWICK is a Consultant Radiologist previously placed in the Hippocrates Prize, longlisted in the national poetry competition and published in many poetry journals. One of her interests is the overlap between medicine and the humanities. 

She said that her poem, The surgeon's secretary phones to cancel your appointment, is from a series of poems in response to her father’s melanoma diagnosis."

Judith Wozniak

JUDITH WOZNIAK spent her working life as a GP and recently completed an M.A. in Writing Poetry at the Poetry School. She has had poems published in; Reach Poetry Sideways,, Ink Sweat &Tears, The Poetry Shed, The Hippocrates Prize Anthology 2019 and the NHS Poetry Anthology, These are the Hands 2020.   

About Undercover she said: “One of the strategies I tried to help me to run to time in surgery was to collect my patients from the waiting room. This gave me the opportunity to check their mobility and exchange social niceties before arriving in my consulting room. Some disclosures were too intriguing to ignore."

She added: "A Routine House Call was inspired by a doctor I met in my early days in practice whom I regard as a role model. In those days the frail and elderly looked forward to a regular visit from their own doctor. These routine visits may have made it difficult to bother the doctor with a new problem, especially if it was felt to be embarrassing. I learned from my own practice how useful a fresh pair of eyes and ears could be.


JG HIPP

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