Psychiatry 1: Early Years – Introduction

I’ve spent a lifetime (so far) in and around public psychiatry here in Victoria (Australia), starting from when, as a small child, my Eastern European immigrant parents found secure work in the local Lunatic Asylum (around 1960), to growing up in the town with an easy familiarity for the place where my parents worked and then into the system myself.

I was a student Psychiatric Nurse for three years at the local institution, and then proceeded up and down the ranks within the system as it was at the time, and as we made it during my time.

This collection is a series of poems that draws on my experiences on this journey – one that I am yet to complete. Together with my wife and collaborator Leanne Murphy, we had visions of traditional publication and all the dreamy bits that go with that, but, while I think this is an important set of stories and perspectives, that kind of publication is now unlikely, and so I plan to share what I have with you, here at my poetry blog.

I hope you enjoy the reading, but feel free to let me know, either way. Psychiatric issues can only benefit from discussion.

The series begins here.



13 thoughts on “Psychiatry 1: Early Years – Introduction

    • Hi Claire.

      Yes, it surely is. I hope you enjoy the series.

      My own feeling is that it is important to ‘look’ at and inside our institutions, but I’m still part of the system, so folk have to judge what they find, I guess.

      Thanks for reading and for commenting.



      Liked by 2 people

  1. I think this is a fascinating and important idea – you’re right – it’s important and although it would be most excellent to hold off and publish in a traditional way – well, it’s also wonderful that you have this option and are deciding to share with us 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

      • well, maybe a smaller or alternative press might be interested, but either way, from all that I have read of your works here, your voice and the subject/content, especially when you have such a specific topic and point of view, should be heard and read – widely.

        Liked by 2 people

      • That’s good of you to say – thank you.

        I gave up on seeking publication (more or less) a long while ago. Apart from anything else, I don’t have a lot of drive to self-promote. When I self published a couple of collections, I sort of imagined they’d walk out the door, but I ended up with 1 – 200 books to lug around and felt a bit depressed about it.

        This is better.



        Liked by 1 person

      • It’s hard to self-promote – really. It takes tremendous effort and support – a job within a job, so whatever means and ways seem to work better for you, then by all mean, follow them. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. This is a very interesting background, Frank. I am reminded of a book of poetry I picked up at a second-hand store called Two Hemispheres by Nadine McInnis. Nadine wrote poetry based on ten photographs taken, of women in the Surrey Lunatic Asylum [England] in 1850.
    While it would be wonderful for you to have your books sitting proudly on your bookshelf, many of us out here would certainly have missed reading your poetry online. Also, we would not have the pleasures of conversing with other poets and with our followers.

    Liked by 1 person

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