Behavior: Poetry Therapy

In their efforts to understand the mental illnesses they treat, therapists sometimes encourage their patients to express themselves in painting, music, dance and drama. Now they are turning to yet another art form: poetry.

Across the U.S., according to the current issue of the Sciences, there are now about 3,500 mental patients, prison inmates, troubled students and nursing-home residents who are reading and writing poetry under the guidance of some 400 psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers and specially trained English teachers. These programs have shown so much promise that formal training in poetry therapy...

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