Learning to Exhale
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My MA mini-thesis in Creative Writing is a collection of 33 poems titled Learning to Exhale. The poems are centred around a character – a black African woman who is sharing her experiences of mental illness. The poems revolve around memory, forgetting and remembering; going back to the moment when the woman realises that she is ill, understanding it from the present while working to find ways to express what bipolar disorder is and how she experiences it. The collection also highlights her search for words and meaning to describe these experiences that are highly traumatic. This is to create a language of expressing the indescribable. This means that the form and structure is experimental, combining differing styles and form to show different voices, different states of mind that swing from depression, mania to suicidal thoughts.