Poetry and Trust

Welcome to the Autumn series of workshops with Arthur Rank Hospice Charity, aimed at members of the Living Well community.

This week we want to explore the theme of trust. As the season moves to autumn and amidst a lot of turmoil in the world, we’re aiming to have an uplifting conversation around this topic and to think about the ways in which through relationships – with family, friends, loved ones, communities, nature – we can trust in certain things, rely on or believe or lean on steadiness and support. We’ll be exploring the theme through a number of extracts that approach the topic in quite different ways.

This morning we will:

Hear some poetry and prose on the topic of trust from a range of perspectives.
Discuss how the authors express their ideas and feelings.
Talk reflectively together, share our perspectives and favourites, and how these poems can give us a new insight.

The Poems

  1. Thomas Smith, Trust
  2. D. H. Lawrence, Extract from Trust 

    Oh we’ve got to trust
    one another again
    in some essentials. 

    Not the narrow little
    bargaining trust
    that says: I’m for you
    if you’ll be for me.
    -But a bigger trust,
    a trust of the sun
    that does not bother
    about moth and rust,
    and we see it shining
    in one another.


  3. Adrienne Rich, Extract from Origins and History of Consciousness

    It’s simple to wake from sleep with a stranger,
    dress, go out, drink coffee,
    enter a life again. It isn’t simple
    to wake from sleep into the neighborhood
    of one neither strange nor familiar
    whom we have chosen to trust. Trusting, untrusting,
    we lowered ourselves into this, let ourselves
    downward hand over hand as on a rope that quivered over the unsearched….
    We did this. Conceived of each other,
    conceived each other in a darkness which
    I remember as drenched in light.
    I want to call this, life.

  4. E E Cummings, [i carry your heart with me(i carry it in]

Further Reading

You may like to have a look at Words for our selection of poetry and prose on the theme of death and dying.

We’d love to hear your thoughts, suggestions, and learn from your insights and experiences. Feel free to speak to the nursing team or get in touch with us directly cambridgegooddeath@gmail.com.