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Healing Words: Poetry and Medicine
Healing Words Poetry and Medicine
Actor: Peter Coyote
Director: James Cavenaugh;David Drewery
Genres: Special Interests, Television, Documentary
UR     2008     1hr 0min

This documentary tells the stories of patients whose lives have been dramatically changed as a result of Dr. John Graham-Pole and poetry therapist John Fox's incorporation of poetry into their recovery process. At a time w...  more »


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Movie Details

Actor: Peter Coyote
Director: James Cavenaugh;David Drewery
Genres: Special Interests, Television, Documentary
Sub-Genres: Health, Television, Documentary
Studio: Pbs (Direct)
Format: DVD - Color - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 08/12/2008
Release Year: 2008
Run Time: 1hr 0min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English

Movie Reviews

Thoughtful, moving, powerful
T. Lewis | 09/23/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This film is an hour-long look at the practice -- the very uncommon practice - of using poetry and art as part of an effort to re-humanize modern medical care. Perhaps because I am a doctor myself, I feared from the title that the film would be maudlin, saccharine, or depressing. It is none of these things. Instead, this is a thoughtful, moving, and powerful examination of the efforts of several doctors to re-infuse emotional connection and healing into the technology-dominated enterprise of giving medical care to sick and dying people. The film portrays not only the effect of using poetry in medicine on the patients, but also on the doctors themselves, and on a group of up-and-coming medical students. Even though the subject matter sounds very heavy, the film itself is not; it's inspiring. I thought about it for days afterward, weeks -- heck, I'm still thinking about it. I encourage anybody who is a doctor or a patient or anyone who may one day become a patient, to watch this extraordinary film."
Inspiring and possible
Ruth Mckay | New York | 03/13/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This film shows the inspiring work of John Fox, poetry therapist, and other remarkable artists and medical professionals engaged in the use of the arts for healing. I work as aa medical family therapist in pediatric hematology-oncology and what has touched me the most is seeing what is possible. Often we see inspiring work and think that we could never do anything like that, or it wouldn't work in my setting, or in some other way feel disconnected form the work presented, as if great people do things differently from ordinary people at their jobs. In this film we see that art and healing are truly for us all. We see what a difference someone truly engaged and listening can make. The healing extends to us a viewers, as well. It has affected my work and I have shared it with colleagues. I expect to continue to do so for the rest of my career."
Poetry heals
Lauretta A. Lunsford | Muncie, Indiana | 10/18/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I write poetry one on one with residents at our health care center. Words that come out of the soul, come forth creatively, and as a result they heal. This DVD validates the work that I do daily with older adults who are in skilled nursing care. This DVD brought me to tears as I watched the words and the movement come forth in those who would otherwise be "bound up". The arts set the inner self free to be creative and in turn bring wellness."