Hot Best Seller

Odes to Lithium

Availability: Ready to download

In this remarkable debut, Shira Erlichman pens a love letter to Lithium, her medication for Bipolar Disorder. With inventiveness, compassion, and humor, she thrusts us into a world of unconventional praise. From an unexpected encounter with her grandmother's ghost, to a bubble bath with Bjӧrk, to her plumber's confession that he, too, has Bipolar, Erlichman buoyantly toppl In this remarkable debut, Shira Erlichman pens a love letter to Lithium, her medication for Bipolar Disorder. With inventiveness, compassion, and humor, she thrusts us into a world of unconventional praise. From an unexpected encounter with her grandmother's ghost, to a bubble bath with Bjӧrk, to her plumber's confession that he, too, has Bipolar, Erlichman buoyantly topples stigma against the mentally ill. These are necessary odes to self-acceptance, resilience, and the jagged path toward healing. With startling language, and accompanied by her bold drawings and collages, she gives us a sparkling, original view into what makes us human.


Compare

In this remarkable debut, Shira Erlichman pens a love letter to Lithium, her medication for Bipolar Disorder. With inventiveness, compassion, and humor, she thrusts us into a world of unconventional praise. From an unexpected encounter with her grandmother's ghost, to a bubble bath with Bjӧrk, to her plumber's confession that he, too, has Bipolar, Erlichman buoyantly toppl In this remarkable debut, Shira Erlichman pens a love letter to Lithium, her medication for Bipolar Disorder. With inventiveness, compassion, and humor, she thrusts us into a world of unconventional praise. From an unexpected encounter with her grandmother's ghost, to a bubble bath with Bjӧrk, to her plumber's confession that he, too, has Bipolar, Erlichman buoyantly topples stigma against the mentally ill. These are necessary odes to self-acceptance, resilience, and the jagged path toward healing. With startling language, and accompanied by her bold drawings and collages, she gives us a sparkling, original view into what makes us human.

30 review for Odes to Lithium

  1. 4 out of 5

    Alana

    Ode to Lithium #63: Lightweight   at the party I’m called a lightweight while you shovel salt through my blood like a dedicated father clearing the driveway except the driveway is the whole world you make wine take off its clothes faster glaze my eyes with gentle & I deserve a life– time supply of this ease so when they tease “just one drink & you’re good” they don’t know ………it’s not the wine somebody cares for me Ode to Lithium #63: Lightweight   at the party I’m called a lightweight while you shovel salt through my blood like a dedicated father clearing the driveway except the driveway is the whole world you make wine take off its clothes faster glaze my eyes with gentle & I deserve a life– time supply of this ease so when they tease “just one drink & you’re good” they don’t know ………it’s not the wine somebody cares for me

  2. 4 out of 5

    Lyd Havens

    After years of reading Shira's poetry in journals, I knew I was going to like this collection, and yet it was still a surprise to feel so seen, held, and valued by it. No one does wonder and gratitude like Shira—but I truly appreciated seeing it balanced between the heavy yet necessary truths of the stigma against mental illness and medication, how lonely and isolating mental illness can be, and how so many of us have to put our worlds back together over and over again. I am so, so thankful for After years of reading Shira's poetry in journals, I knew I was going to like this collection, and yet it was still a surprise to feel so seen, held, and valued by it. No one does wonder and gratitude like Shira—but I truly appreciated seeing it balanced between the heavy yet necessary truths of the stigma against mental illness and medication, how lonely and isolating mental illness can be, and how so many of us have to put our worlds back together over and over again. I am so, so thankful for this book.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review; opinions are my own. You know how once in a while you’re kind of flirting with several books at once and then you pick one up you thought you’d save for later but it grabs you by the throat and injects you with magic serum that makes you stay? That’s what happened to me with this book. I stayed with it until I was done; I want to stay with it forever. A one-sitting read that cracked open the shell of my world and I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review; opinions are my own. You know how once in a while you’re kind of flirting with several books at once and then you pick one up you thought you’d save for later but it grabs you by the throat and injects you with magic serum that makes you stay? That’s what happened to me with this book. I stayed with it until I was done; I want to stay with it forever. A one-sitting read that cracked open the shell of my world and made my heart race, this book is a work of art: Erlichman is a visual artist in addition to a sharp-axed wordsmith, and some of her visual art graces these pages. The cover alone is stunning, but the visual accompaniments to the poems bring a beautiful extra layer to the experience of reading them. As the title says, this collection is filled with odes to the drug, the element, the mystery of lithium. Erlichman writes of how it can free her from the ‘neon isolation of mind-jail’ of Bipolar II. ‘Who do you speak to in my body that listens,’ she asks lithium in ‘The Watchman.’ But her relationship with the drug is far from simple. Erlichman’s absolutely seductive lines and stanzas weave a gorgeous tapestry of themes with threads of stigma, beauty, fear, curiosity, memory, nature, illness/wellness, and a sometimes tenuous sense of reality. She uses several poetic forms which keeps the book super engaging, and her use of metaphor and imagery is dazzlingly good. Every single poem here was a hit for me. I highly recommend this book, definitely one of my top reads of the year.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Kristin MB

    (Copied from my Instagram post) Today, I finished my first poetry collection of 2020, this absolutely stunning gift of a book by the wonderful @sheer_awe. She proves that poetry is very much alive, and that it can beautiful, complex, and still accessible. Believe me when I tell you, you will not regret picking up this collection. In it, Shira Erlichman creates magical worlds and painful hells of loneliness; confusion and clarity and hope; desire and distance and a return to desire again. Above al (Copied from my Instagram post) Today, I finished my first poetry collection of 2020, this absolutely stunning gift of a book by the wonderful @sheer_awe. She proves that poetry is very much alive, and that it can beautiful, complex, and still accessible. Believe me when I tell you, you will not regret picking up this collection. In it, Shira Erlichman creates magical worlds and painful hells of loneliness; confusion and clarity and hope; desire and distance and a return to desire again. Above all, this is a profoundly hopeful and validating collection for anyone who has or loves someone with mental illness. It is about the power of love, the transformative experience of relationship, and the realities of the murkiness in the process of healing, and of course, an ode to Lithium, the medicine that both gives and takes from her. Sincerest gratitude to you, Shira, for this phenomenal light of collection that casts away some of the fog of confusion and stigma of mental illness and to @alicejamesbooks, an indie press that amplifies voices we have been searching for. 💗 P.S. Do not stop at the last poem or image. The acknowledgements, too, are a treasure to read. Also, since Goodreads failed to include number pages, I am including a note about this for myself: 93 pages including notes and acknowledgements, 87 without.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Basia

    These poems boast breathtaking imagination—a bubble bath with Bjork, Phineas Gage as a house guest, and of course, lithium as a kind of life form⁠—all while sitting with the real need for and consequences of the lithium itself, in devastating moments in an ice cream parlor, surprisingly beautiful exchanges in a hospital parking lot, and in memory lapses witnessed by a lover who offers not fear in the face of her forgetfulness, but compassion. The collection is diverse in forms too, including nea These poems boast breathtaking imagination—a bubble bath with Bjork, Phineas Gage as a house guest, and of course, lithium as a kind of life form⁠—all while sitting with the real need for and consequences of the lithium itself, in devastating moments in an ice cream parlor, surprisingly beautiful exchanges in a hospital parking lot, and in memory lapses witnessed by a lover who offers not fear in the face of her forgetfulness, but compassion. The collection is diverse in forms too, including neat lyrics, prose poems, epistolary poems written backwards, and a stunning poem with words of despair crossed out and replaced by alternatives that insist on survival, even if it means imperfection. In this noteworthy debut, Shira Erlichman has pulled off an impressive feat.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Samantha Pearl

    “It’s not easy dying without dying. Before I ever took the pills I took so much. So much was taken. I’m done. I’m here.” - Postscript to Mania This beautiful book of poems lived up to all of the hype my heart made for it when Shira first announced it’s release on her instagram. The poems accurately, painfully, beautifully, intensely depict the intricacies of living with bipolar disorder. Shira’s poetics are easy to follow and they invoke emotion and imagery. The realities of Bipolar Disorder are “It’s not easy dying without dying. Before I ever took the pills I took so much. So much was taken. I’m done. I’m here.” - Postscript to Mania This beautiful book of poems lived up to all of the hype my heart made for it when Shira first announced it’s release on her instagram. The poems accurately, painfully, beautifully, intensely depict the intricacies of living with bipolar disorder. Shira’s poetics are easy to follow and they invoke emotion and imagery. The realities of Bipolar Disorder are something people don’t try to understand because they don’t want to, and a book like this is what the world needs. Thank you so so much Shira for sharing your truth. Here’s to the mentally ill and the poets who continue to sing their realities no matter what they look like. Here’s to Lithium (and all the psychotropics tbh) for poisoning and salting and allowing life.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kristina

    Really stunning book of poetry, a real love letter to lithium. I do not read a lot of poetry, but my gateway into this is that I work in the mental health field and have many clients who lithium has worked wonders on. The writing here is really gorgeous and thoughtful.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Linda

    Favorite poems: "Snakes In Your Arms," "I'm Sitting With Björk in my Bathtub," "Thirteen Ways of Looking at Phineas Gage," "Portrait of a Release" From the acknowledgments: "'You once wrote, 'Thank you for having the courage to live inside the hope you wish for [and the courage to] bring us to the edge of fullness time and time again.' This remains my compass." "To the creative force that originates all phenomena—whenever I feel awe, I feel you." "'Talk.' I sing, going the extra mile." (30) "The clas Favorite poems: "Snakes In Your Arms," "I'm Sitting With Björk in my Bathtub," "Thirteen Ways of Looking at Phineas Gage," "Portrait of a Release" From the acknowledgments: "'You once wrote, 'Thank you for having the courage to live inside the hope you wish for [and the courage to] bring us to the edge of fullness time and time again.' This remains my compass." "To the creative force that originates all phenomena—whenever I feel awe, I feel you." "'Talk.' I sing, going the extra mile." (30) "The class chatters: was he never the same? A brute? Or was he, as some wrote, a miracle? No one says 'both.'" (36) "How do you pollinate my blood so exactly with sanity Does my brain's infinite heart burden you Why find my grandmother too late Why not kiss everyone who needs your fix Why leave some to their singed waves Who do you speak to in my body that listens" (56) "'I take meds & everything. Zyprexa & Seroquel. You?' When I say Lithium it is a fact, like telling him what city I was born in & finding out he's from there too." (60) "/ last night in an unprecedented turn of events I held my suffering to my ear & heard. / the brain broke itself the brain broke itself rather than I broke the brain I broke the I broke I /" (82) "'What's your dose?' the new psychiatrist asks. dose, from Greek dosis, meaning gift." (86) "I cannot help but think of you: dying into my blood each morning, each night. What a blessing, my monk, to be your fire." (87)

  9. 4 out of 5

    Gabrijela Kovac

    In this intimate book of poetry, Shira reveals her epistolary relationship with Lithium - a medicine prescribed for her Bipolar Disorder. She delves into her experiences of traumatising hospitalisations, stays in mental health hospitals, the effects and side-effects of drugs prescribed, the anecdotes of living life with Bipolar, and the inability to connect with people around. Above all, I was amazed by the raw portrayal of the relationship with her mother. The recurring theme of their troubled In this intimate book of poetry, Shira reveals her epistolary relationship with Lithium - a medicine prescribed for her Bipolar Disorder. She delves into her experiences of traumatising hospitalisations, stays in mental health hospitals, the effects and side-effects of drugs prescribed, the anecdotes of living life with Bipolar, and the inability to connect with people around. Above all, I was amazed by the raw portrayal of the relationship with her mother. The recurring theme of their troubled relationship felt like an unrefined, emotional journey that ends with Shira dedicating this book to her. Reading it was such a wholesome experience. ---------------—------------- "without blueprint, we beat our path into the ground until others can walk there. 'What's your dose? ' the new psychiatrist asks. Dose, from Greek dosis, meaning gift." "brave: a minor form of despair, disguised as virtue." "At night I shake the tablets in my palms. But if you were someone? You'd be real. I'd hold you & thank you."

  10. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    Oops, I accidentally read this in a single sitting. I have a hard time savoring poetry and tend to devour it all in one go. Shira Erlichman's poems are beautiful. So, so beautiful. They're thought-provoking too, as they all cover mental illness, specifically her Bipolar Disorder, and her appreciation and love for the Lithium that helps her. She plays with structure in some interesting ways, and has some really lovely, creative, and unique turns of phrase. The images Erlichman crafts are striking. Oops, I accidentally read this in a single sitting. I have a hard time savoring poetry and tend to devour it all in one go. Shira Erlichman's poems are beautiful. So, so beautiful. They're thought-provoking too, as they all cover mental illness, specifically her Bipolar Disorder, and her appreciation and love for the Lithium that helps her. She plays with structure in some interesting ways, and has some really lovely, creative, and unique turns of phrase. The images Erlichman crafts are striking. I loved the poem about Phineas Gage, and the 89 lines one. Her illustrations throughout add a lot to the collection. Highly recommend this book to anyone interested in reading more poetry or learning about mental health and mental illness.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    Very biased because Shira has been my teacher and is an amazing human being. I'm impressed by the variety of forms these poems take in communicating the seemingly unsayable around mental illness and medications. Shira definitely practices what she preaches: letting the poems teach you how they want to exist in the world. The biggest takeaway I've learned from Shira is, "Are you expressing something, or are you *communicating*?" These poems communicate, building a bridge from a speaker's personal Very biased because Shira has been my teacher and is an amazing human being. I'm impressed by the variety of forms these poems take in communicating the seemingly unsayable around mental illness and medications. Shira definitely practices what she preaches: letting the poems teach you how they want to exist in the world. The biggest takeaway I've learned from Shira is, "Are you expressing something, or are you *communicating*?" These poems communicate, building a bridge from a speaker's personal and private heart straight into my own.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Shannon

    I don’t usually cry, not from books, TV, or film. This moved me, even through the Acknowledgements. There were tears. I hope, if you’re reading this and wondering if you should pick up this book, you choose to read these poems, read this work cover to cover.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Maggie (babewithabookandabeer)

    Her poem “Side Effects” immediately made this a five star read.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Dani Saiz

    Erlichman does an amazing job with her poetry and capturing mental illness. I found a peer within those pages.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ronnie Stephens

    Full review at thepoetryquestion.com.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sylwia (Wish Fulfillment)

    DNF at 26/120 pages of the ebook. Not rating because I don’t think I’m equipped to review poetry. Mental health is my passion in life so I like reading about it much more directly, so this was not for me.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Steph

    Amazing collection. Relatable for those with depression (even unipolar). Favorite poem (on this reading): PORTRAIT OF A RELEASE It was my mother who picked me up from the mental hospital - but only to drop me off at Kit's. Kit is the type of friend who will not only let you stay at her house after you've been in a mental hospital, no questions asked, but will give you her bed instead of the couch. The car ride was silent. My mother didn't dare speak. I stared out the window, boiling and frozen. There wa Amazing collection. Relatable for those with depression (even unipolar). Favorite poem (on this reading): PORTRAIT OF A RELEASE It was my mother who picked me up from the mental hospital - but only to drop me off at Kit's. Kit is the type of friend who will not only let you stay at her house after you've been in a mental hospital, no questions asked, but will give you her bed instead of the couch. The car ride was silent. My mother didn't dare speak. I stared out the window, boiling and frozen. There was no radio and autumn was Jackson Pollocking all over our windshield. The ride from McLean Hospital to Kit's doorstep was forty-five minutes of foliage and breath. I remember when she dropped me off at the curb, my backpack full of clothes, wondering how she could just drive off. As if a car, if you were a mother dropping off your child, should just stop working, dry of gas or brakes cut, forcing mothering to take effect. But I got out, said a one-syllable goodbye, and the car pulled away with my mother inside. * Four days is a long time in a mental hospital. How do you even fill one day in a mental hospital? Where do you go? Who do you talk to? When the pay phone rang and some sleepy body shouted for me, I asked if it was my parents, and if it was, I wouldn't answer. The one time I did answer, my mother spoke like a garden hose full of holes, spouting everywhere, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, it should have been different." And the sad thing is, the garden hose was trying, it was actually elegant in its miserable mess, it was trying. But the thing about "I'm sorry" when you're hearing it from a phone booth in a neon hallway of a mental hospital, is that it doesn't really mow your lawn, it doesn't really cut your steak, you know? * Four days of avoiding the girl who wanted to tell me why she didn't really belong in this ward. Four days of collaging paper-mache to a journal and banging a stupid tiny drum in "Music Therapy." Four days of knowing your parents are paying the hospital bill and wondering if they resent you. Four days of irreconcilable boredom, which gives way to awe at the glory of autumn outside your barred window. Four days of reading Rumi by yourself in your room. Four days of bathrooms without locks. Four days of nurses with minuscule paper cups of experimental doses. Four days in which "I'm sorry" is like a bird thrashing against your window. * Kit's house is a twenty-minute walk from Faulkner Hospital, where I'll be an Outpatient, which basically just means I don't sleep there. For a week and a half, for six hours a day, I am a body in a chair listening and talking with other bodies in chairs. I don't cry. Not for myself. At least, not here. But I do cry for others whose stories undo my sense of capital J Justice. In all their stories there is a common thread: someone didn't listen. Sometimes it is a brother, or a wife, sometimes it is a mother. * On my morning walks to the hospital I am shellacked in beauty. Red leaves falter like prayer flags on the branch. Yellow leaves grin their good yellow teeth. When I start to think of my family, my father stewing somewhere in evergreen sweatpants and a private, heavy rage, or my brother ignoring his feelings, moving like a bolt of brunette lightning through his days, or most vividly, my mother, guilt eating her heart like a silkworm on the vine, I practice a Cognitive Behavioral Exercise the Group Therapist taught us. It's simple and it works: notice the colors around you. In ROYGBIV order. This will reroute your brain away from the emotional center, where mother happens, toward the logical center, where math happens. * Red: leaves, stoplight, jacket on a woman down the path, red fleck of paint on my brown boots. Orange is how headlights look when they're turned off midday; where are those cars going? To work? To family? Orange is a tree shaking its arms like a bad dancer. Orange is the sign advertising a new TV show, one lost orange glove near the bus stop bench. Yellow, slutty tree, oh cerebellum, oh Lithium, do your job. Oh cortex, oh frontal lobe, throw me into a logic that doesn't make me think of family. Yellow nails, yellow-pale cloud in an otherwise blue sky. Green trees losing to autumn, green grass with signs: Keep Off. Green jacket on a man walking toward me. Blue sky. Blue sky. Blue jacket on me. Blue car. Blue building with white trim. Indigo, what is indigo anyway? Violet's moody sister. Purple, let's just say, and it's nowhere. A car, dark purple, that'll do. A passing woman's cold lips. The hospital is not purple. If it was, it wouldn't be a hospital. It wouldn't be a serious place. Purple is a flower color and color, all color, is something my mother loves.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Kent Winward

    Thanks to this double-edged salt, by the time I'm fifty, will I remember anything at all? Well, I am well past 50 and I remember and still live in a world where psychiatric medications impact my life on a daily basis. I remember, but then I've never taken any medications. This poetry collection explores the almost romantic connection our society has created around medications. But this is a dysfunctional romance where every loving embrace comes with a side effect. The sad and unspoken truth of this w Thanks to this double-edged salt, by the time I'm fifty, will I remember anything at all? Well, I am well past 50 and I remember and still live in a world where psychiatric medications impact my life on a daily basis. I remember, but then I've never taken any medications. This poetry collection explores the almost romantic connection our society has created around medications. But this is a dysfunctional romance where every loving embrace comes with a side effect. The sad and unspoken truth of this work and others like it is the mental health system is a profitable and mostly ineffective drug experiment carried out on the most vulnerable. The suffering in the book is real. I have no doubt about that. Our modes of hospitalization and drug cocktails provide an occasional oasis in a vast world of suffering. My personal preference would be that poetry collections like this become a relic of the past, where mental pain and suffering is healed and repaired, rather than drugged into a stupor, but the reality is no one knows the actual pathophysiology of mental health diagnoses. The poem, "Dr. Stone," captures the cold medical profession's approach. At least the poets can expose the horrors, if we will listen.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Patricia Murphy

    My mother was bipolar and took lithium for most of her adult life so I was really interested to read this more recent account. I'll be coming back to this collection over and over. It brings to mind the book Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, which includes one of the best descriptions I have ever read of a manic episode. These poems up the ante on every page. Some of my favorite moments: The side effect of living your life is dying. I focused my fork on a single pea, threaded the tiny planet, and examined i My mother was bipolar and took lithium for most of her adult life so I was really interested to read this more recent account. I'll be coming back to this collection over and over. It brings to mind the book Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, which includes one of the best descriptions I have ever read of a manic episode. These poems up the ante on every page. Some of my favorite moments: The side effect of living your life is dying. I focused my fork on a single pea, threaded the tiny planet, and examined it in the always changing light. My little impossible guru. Prom date to the infinite void. there are so many ways to need yourself. I see her tongue change color & exhale a fuck of rivers. Autumn was Jackson Pollocking all over our windshield. In all their stories there is a common thread: someone didn’t listen. Someone/a stranger/everyone is disappointed in me. Everything was a wick. Even God was worn down by my false sirening. I prefer choosing terror to a terror I didn’t choose. You’re curt, drink your calendar neat, eat everything with a pocketknife, don’t ask me how.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Natalee

    Erlichman’s “Odes to Lithium” presents a deeper sickness in humanity. Deeper than an epidemic or a seeping wound. Our minds. Her poems paint the picture of the struggles of mental illness and mental health’s neglect in our society. Through narratives of characters in verse, the importance of mental health is put into perspective, giving a glimpse into the suffering mentality. The book was absolutely beautiful, deserving a five-star rating. It’s important to acknowledge mental illness in our socie Erlichman’s “Odes to Lithium” presents a deeper sickness in humanity. Deeper than an epidemic or a seeping wound. Our minds. Her poems paint the picture of the struggles of mental illness and mental health’s neglect in our society. Through narratives of characters in verse, the importance of mental health is put into perspective, giving a glimpse into the suffering mentality. The book was absolutely beautiful, deserving a five-star rating. It’s important to acknowledge mental illness in our society as it plays our huge role in our lives. I believe Shira Erlichman portrayed the confusion and contradiction that goes on in the human mind. Perhaps even the denial that one is suffering mental illness. Overall, it was a wonderful read and well worth my time. I highly recommend it for those interested in the Psychology and studies about the human mind.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Courtney LeBlanc

    Overall this is a very good, compelling collection of poems which focus on the poet's mental health and struggle with bipolar disorder and her reliance on lithium, the drug that keeps her brain chemistry balanced. from The Knife-Flower: "Lust was my terrain. I licked / my plate clean. Underlined what was already / underlined. My religion, those muscular, inky odes." from There Were Others: "I know you want to know: Were they better Did I love them Would I ever go back Who was she. // But if you c Overall this is a very good, compelling collection of poems which focus on the poet's mental health and struggle with bipolar disorder and her reliance on lithium, the drug that keeps her brain chemistry balanced. from The Knife-Flower: "Lust was my terrain. I licked / my plate clean. Underlined what was already / underlined. My religion, those muscular, inky odes." from There Were Others: "I know you want to know: Were they better Did I love them Would I ever go back Who was she. // But if you could see what they gave me: years. / From the bottom of the lake they scraped my literacy for breathing." An honest, refreshing, and poetic look at mental illness.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ari

    There's a multifaceted complexity to this - the structural composition of the poems and the content itself - culminating in a stack of love letters that will unapologetically wrench your heart. Regardless of specific experience with or around mental health, these poems will evoke a visceral response as you flounder in the in-between of pain and empathy. A relationship flayed open to expose every pulsing nerve - you'll never realize how deeply you can feel about a chemical compound until you see There's a multifaceted complexity to this - the structural composition of the poems and the content itself - culminating in a stack of love letters that will unapologetically wrench your heart. Regardless of specific experience with or around mental health, these poems will evoke a visceral response as you flounder in the in-between of pain and empathy. A relationship flayed open to expose every pulsing nerve - you'll never realize how deeply you can feel about a chemical compound until you see lithium through Erlichman's eyes.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Grace Quantock

    Poems as touchstones These poems are beautiful, powerful, and mediate truly between the inner and outer worlds and transitions. There are stanzas which became touchstone I carried with me through difficult days. Words that lived alongside me in navigating life. It’s the book that you can’t wait to share, to read aloud, to reflect on. Highly & wholeheartedly recommended if you like poetry library that transforms (itself & you). Poems as touchstones These poems are beautiful, powerful, and mediate truly between the inner and outer worlds and transitions. There are stanzas which became touchstone I carried with me through difficult days. Words that lived alongside me in navigating life. It’s the book that you can’t wait to share, to read aloud, to reflect on. Highly & wholeheartedly recommended if you like poetry library that transforms (itself & you).

  24. 5 out of 5

    Joe Archer

    Stylistically interesting and emotionally charged, Odes to Lithium is a unique reading experience and a glimpse into the mind of an artist living with Bipolar Disorder. There were a few poems, full of parental blaming, that came off as a bit juvenile from an outsider's perspective, but overall this was a great debut collection.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    This was a hard read, and not one I saw myself in, but it is very much a book I want to leave in a public place or a little library in hopes that it finds its way to someone who needs it. It seems extremely honest and the words and layout are creative in a way that I think will help many folks will find themselves reflected in a new and kind and generous way.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    Shira is my favorite poet on the planet and this collection did not disappoint. I cannot say enough good things about this book and the necessity of you reading it and bearing witness to her story told with such bravery, vulnerability, honesty, bold imagery, and clear crispness. I will be recommending this to so many people for a very long time.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Andrew

    Sad and funny and aware and meaningful. I loved the different styles of every poem, I loved the author’s artwork alongside, I loved how every poem talked about the state of being mentally ill without falling to cliche or pity. I loved every page of it I loved every page of I loved every page I loved every I loved I

  28. 4 out of 5

    Diana Marie Denza

    This is a brilliant, accessible collection of poetry that explores the various ups and downs of life with bipolar disorder. There were lines I had to read multiple times because they were just stunning. I felt like this collection gave me a better understanding of what life with this disorder is like, and has the potential to shatter stigma and help people feel a bit less alone.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Uma Dwivedi

    shira uses language with a density and wonder that is not 100% to my personal taste but that i respect immensely and can learn a lot from. some of these poems felt like love letters to people (like shira and myself) who are mentally ill and have been through hospitalization and outpatient settings, who have been medicated and through medication achieved something resembling functionality.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lily Blackburn

    My favorite poem was about taking a bath with Bjork - but truly this book is beautiful. I am so grateful for this book and Erlichman's tackling the stigmas of mental illness. It's truly profound. the art-work Erlichman includes in the book is stunning. I found myself wanting to frame these images and her poems! Kind of a cool/rare experience in a poetry book.

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.