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The Poetry of Nursing

Poems and Commentaries of Leading Nurse-Poets

Literature & Medicine, Medicine, Poetry

DescriptionA gathering of nurses’ voices

“The fourteen major nurse poets here, born in different geographical locations and with different clinical backgrounds, have been poets since childhood. They all carry journals or bits of paper in their pockets, always ready to have-a-say about what they witness in their work or in their private lives. . . .We pass the baton, shift to shift and generation to generation. I pass the baton to the poets here and to all the others represented by this band of bards.”— from the Introduction

So much written about literature and medicine has been from the perspective of physicians. But in the last few years nurses have found their voices and are making important contributions to the field of biomedical and nursing humanities. These men and women professionals see different things and experience patients and health care issues in different contexts.

Judy Schaefer has compiled this anthology of contemporary nurse-poets’ work, which is accompanied by their commentaries about their poetry, their work, and their lives. She has gathered contributions from some of the best-known nurse-poets as well as from those who deserve to be. The Poetry of Nursing will add significantly to the ever-growing body of literature that connects medicine, nursing, and the humanities.

EditorJudy Schaefer, R.N.C., M.A., is a part-time lecturer for Penn State. She coedited Between the Heartbeats (1995) and Intensive Care (2003), anthologies of creative writing by nurses.