Friday, October 26, 2012

The psychiatric slam-it bin

I go to a lot of Melbourne poetry events and usually read my comic poetry. And, while I get laughs and a good response to this I’ve noticed there are ‘serious poets’ who think I haven’t got anything to say that might make them think, that I’m not doing anything daring, that I’m flippant... I’ve noticed this particularly with slam poets. They’re a pretty serious lot and yes it is becoming a genre, you can pick current slam poetry by its rhythm, tone, angle and length. Slam poets are into activism and human  as well as animal rights and good on them. But, I learnt a while ago that if I’m to get up there and say what my fight is about and the prejudice I’m against, people seem to take a step back and cast me into the bin with nonsense things. In other words, I may as well be doing comic poetry, because at least then, I know I’ll have made the fuckers who want pure entertainment laugh. At least some portion of the audience will be satisfied.

So here it is, my slam poem:

The psychiatric slam-it bin

I don’t want to talk about

This stuff anymore.

I’m wrong, I’m wrong,

I’m so very wrong…

To ever mention

Things on my mind.

My mind, that lost the plot

And got a blast of indifference

In a set up treatment plan

That shut me down,

And brainwashed me into

Continual self-hate stupidity

As I felt my brain switch off

During those doses and doses

That made me dose

And wish it was all over.

I could see no light

When they insisted I’d have to

Take it forever, their medicine

That stuff that made me sick.

I had to agree and be agreeable

To their treatment of me.

Thank them and tell them they're lovely.

But I shouldn’t mention this

Because I’m wrong, so wrong…

I know that’s what some psychiatrists think

And demand I agree

Or else I’m meeting criteria

In section 73 involving electricity

To my, ‘treatment resistant’ body.

My period flows immediately

And doesn’t appear again while I’m addled

By their medical treatments.

I couldn’t get pregnant if I wanted to

On their doses of neuroleptic drugs.

They give ECT to those expecting

Because they don’t want to give

The foetus too many harmful chemicals

That they think are okay to give me.

A few doses of electricity

Are less likely to hurt the baby

Apparently, yes apparently

'It’s quite a peaceful procedure,'

The psych nurse assures me.

'And what can you do

When someone hears voices

That are telling them to harm?

If they kill themselves

Then they will also kill their baby!

What can you do

But forcefully cause their temples

To sting with electric shocks

That make them forget they’re pregnant

And hopefully make them docile

As a cute little pup?'

I listen to the psych nurse

Giving his lecture

I hear a psychologist concede

With his beliefs that don’t

Match well with lived-experience

Of those who rage and complain

That they never want ECT again.

And I hear a command voice

That says, ‘Kill the fucker dead!

He’s advocating torture,

The prejudiced ugly smuck.

See that electrical chord

Plugged in for high voltage?

Cut it in half and take

The live wire to his ugly mouth

And ask him how at peace

He is with feeling that!’

My teeth grit with memories

I bite down the old threats

Onto the insides of my cheeks.

Freaks we are to them.

Those who label us ‘mentally ill’,

Tell us to be good little patients

And keep swallowing their pills

Or they’ll have to drag us in

And stick pricks in our behinds,

Full of the stuff they say is good for us.

It stops us from thinking,

It stops us from creating,

Our anger is squashed,

Our protest is dismissed.

We have to comply,

We have to be

Agreeable to their treatment

Or else, you see.

Medication has its effects…

Can’t really do work on it,

Can’t really talk on it,

Never can drink on it,

Can’t really drive on it,

Can’t get a job on it,

Can’t really read on it,

Can’t remember much on it,

Can’t enjoy sex on it,

Certainly can’t have a baby on it.

There have been cases when

People have gone full term

All dosed up to the fish-eyed stare.

Babies don’t like it though,

Ugly chemicals, really ugly…

Forced on those mothers

Like they’ve been forced on me.

Of course I’m wrong. I’m wrong

I’m so, so wrong… they say.

Society knows they are right.

They make the laws that do

What they think does good.

Tiny little pricks and tiny little pills…

It’s only chemicals in milligrams,

And I’m the one who is the fool.

It’s nothing, it’s ethically sound,

These psychiatric forced treatments.

Sometimes there’s side-effects,

It’s just something on the side,

But if you weigh up the imbalance

Who is listening to who?

‘I mean surely it is better

To drug than to talk things through!

I can’t be bothered with them,

They don’t make sense, that’s the issue.

And surely it is better to have someone

Who is disabled and depressed

Than running around manically undressed?

Because that’s what those sort do,

These mentally ill and who knows

If their neurotransmitters weren’t

Shut down to near zero

By our wonderful medicines,

They may turn psycho killer

As you know these people do.’

That’s not exactly what the lecturer says,

But it’s there in a hint and tone.

I can sense his bleeding heart prejudice

And his promotion of those

Who give him a stance and sponsorship.

And as long as society agrees to his tune,

His volume will be turned up to ruin us all.

The abusive laws will be maintained,

That police those who won’t ever commit crimes,

But have breached the law

By appearing, ‘mentally ill’

Which is enough criteria

For any psychiatric bin

That encloses us within.

I don’t want to go on about it

Or people will start to accuse me

Of being in need of psychiatric intervention.

And that I’m wrong, so very wrong…

Anyway, most people don’t want to know

About the abuse of the abused

Whose coping mechanisms lead to diagnosis.

They don’t want to understand.

They just want to know there is control

Over those who seem strange and give them fear.

They don’t want the unknown to be free,

Unpoliced with its scary possibilities.

Psychiatrists can show prejudice, no problem.

Complain too much about what they do and people can

Pick up the phone and make that call

That’ll have us incarcerated for nothing at all

And on those shut-it-up-shut-it-down drugs

Forced into strait-jackets by a society that could

Be better, if they thought a little more

About what really is happening,

What people with experience are saying,

Instead of keeping up their delusional beliefs

That there’s nothing that can be done

With a person in a waking-dream,

An altered state of consciousness

With unusual sensory experiences,

Except to drug and electrocute them.

That’s seriously unimaginative thuggery!

Of course though I’m wrong,

I’m so wrong and those who

Think I’m wrong are a totalitarian right.

Yep righteous upstanding citizens

Who don’t want to be bothered

Listening to all this, ‘upsetting propaganda

That deprecates psychiatric practice.’

Yep I’m a bitter x-mental patient,

A sick woman dampening pharmaceutical optimism.

I’m riddled with some apparent disease

They intend to find microbial cause for!

I should never be listened to,

Because I got diagnosed schizophrenic

And once you’ve got that, it’s there for life.

When propagating science argues against me

Of course it’s me that’s unbalanced,

Not science, society or the law.

I’m making up stupid conspiracies.

I should keep my bloody mouth shut

Like I did when I was under their order,

Or they might just decide

To lay down their outrageous ‘health acts’

That debilitate and contaminate

And make me fucking irate!

Psychiatric rubbish is something

That needs to be put in the bin,

And people who have been tortured by them

Need society to be listening

And recognising the changes that need implementing.


  1. Very powerful poetry and strong revealing facts of the things so wrong with the health industry! Keep informing us all NO, well done!

    1. Thank you for the encouragement. You're the best!

  2. Replies
    1. Adam got some dosh to spam my blog with this evidently. What an evil contributor of mass torture you are Adam. Even though you don't do the needle sticking yourself, your sort make it possible for the public to believe stupid lies to be 'science' by the such extreme advertising numbing the populations thinking with your so called 'facts' about the 'use' of harmful forced drugging. Don't even try and refute my comments. I am an expert. I have 14 years of lived experience. I have been violated horrifically by psychiatry during that time.

  3. Part of this blog, including 9 lines of poetry, was infringed by Penguin Viking Australia, in 2013. They have not yet apologised, offered decent compensation. They decided to fob me off with a Without Prejudice notice, and the sum they would pay for extracts, if the author had been asked, and if the author had been attributed correctly. More details here: