Icarus Still Flies

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By Nigel Pearce

ISBN: 978-1-84991-129-0
Published: 2010
Pages: 86
Key Themes: poetry, philosophy, psychiatry, manic depression


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Description

This is a collection of poetry and studies which have there origins and nature in my love of writing and ideas. This devolution to writing and reading are essential to my being and, ironically, contributed to my entry into the psychiatric system n 1974 just before my 14 birthday but have sustained throughout. Books and ideas were both an early love and haven in a troubled family. Aged 12 I met an English teacher who introduced me to new poetry and then a radical lecturer and some of his students, we debated many concepts and writing generally; the relationship between writing and ideas. The increasing involvement with the crowd at the university made the fault lines at home particularly sharp. I lived in a bubble of revolutionaries, a few writers, a couple of artists and many people who had simply renounced a conventional way of life; it suited me. I went to live in an avant-garde squat in London and was introduced to ‘experimental art’ such as ‘happenings’. Poetry, radical ideas and everyday life simply merged into a dream. Within a year began a period of involvement with psychiatry which has continued to the present. I will never stopped reading, writing and discussing books and ideas with people.

About the Author

He was born in 1959. Home was troubled a troubled place to be, exacerbated by profound philosophical disagreements. Consequently he ran away to London age 13 where he lived in the ‘counter-culture’. Became ill placed was then placed in the in the Care of the local council. Fostered to a radical academic couple, although that didn’t survive long and he went back underground; eventually being arrested in Guildford. At 14 he went to live in Hollymoor Hospital in Birmingham; this would be age 14-16.He was fairly frequently restrained and given injections of chlorpromazine. Lived for a short time in the ‘Birmingham Settlement’, but became ill again and was moved to a specialist manic-depressive unit where he first had ECT, age 16. Substance abuse continued with regularly admissions to Central Hospital with psychotic episodes and would sometimes go into semi-catatonic states for periods. At 20 he was diagnosed with schizophrenia. Some of the admissions were for periods of around a year. At the age 25 had specialist help with substance abuse problems and he has been ‘clean’ 25 years and ‘dry 13 years’. In 1984 he spent a year in Central Hospital, two years in a Pre-discharge Unit in the community and then eight years in ‘group homes’, but he now lives in his own flat. His body became toxic with medication in 2003 and was seriously ill physically. During the whole period there have been always been some nurses etc who have made his life difficult because of his firmly held leftist ideological perspective. However there were left-wing nurses and social workers who, particularly in the 1970’ and early 1980’s, behaved in an exception way. He gained a BA (Hons) at the Open University in 1999, ‘Certificate in English Studies’ at Warwick University in 2007 and is working for a ‘Diploma in Creative Writing and Literature’ at the Open University at present. Enjoys working in an Oxfam Bookshop once a week and runs a small ‘outsider’ magazine.

Book Extract

Let me introduce you to this collection of poetry and studies and elucidate the origins and nature of my love of writing and ideas. How writing and reading are essential and, ironically, contributed to my entry into the psychiatric system in 1974 just before my 14 birthday, but have sustained throughout.

Books and ideas were both an early love and haven in a troubled family. Aged 12 I met an English teacher who introduced me to new poetry and then a radical lecturer and some of his students, we debated many concepts and writing generally; the relationship between writing and ideas.

The increasing involvement with the crowd at the university made the fault lines at home particularly sharp. I lived in a bubble of revolutionaries, a few writers, a couple of artists and many people who had simply renounced a conventional way of life; it suited me. I went to live in an avant-garde squat in London and was introduced to ‘experimental art’ such as ‘happenings’.

Poetry, radical ideas and everyday life simply merged into a dream. Within a year I was in a psychiatric unit being restrained and injected with Largactal. Two years later, aged 16, Ihad enforced ECT. I have never stopped reading and writing and have a B.A. (Hons) from the Open University, certificate in English Studies from Warwick University and am now studying for a Diploma in Creative Writing and Literature back at the O.U. Possibly most importantly meet others who believe in the transformative power of writing and thinking as I always will.


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This product was added to our catalog on Wednesday 09 June, 2010.