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Sharing a Migraine Poem: Contest Deadline Extended

Some of my fellow Migraineurs have expressed an interest in entering the 2011 Putting Our Heads Together Migraine Poetry Contest, but were concerned about the March 15 deadline approaching so quickly. For some, it seems that this winter has been especially difficult, with more frequent Migraines. I fully understand, and after consulting with my fellow judges (patient educator and advocate Nancy Harris Bonk and staff members of the National Headache Foundation ), I’m pleased to say that we’ve extended the deadline to midnight on Thursday, March 31, 2011.

I’m not eligible to enter the contest, but that doesn’t mean I can’t post a poem to share with you now and then. Writing is a release for me. Whether I’m in physical pain, in emotional turmoil, or just wound up about something, writing is a way to clear my mind and move on. Here’s a poem I wrote after an especially severe Migraine attack:

phantom tango

the beat is faint, the dance slow
so slow I’m not sure we’re dancing
my partner is but a shadow
waiting to become more than a phantom

the disco ball that so blithely
cast shards of light upon my eyes
forecast my partner’s arrival
yet I had dared hope he would not follow

but the beat strengthens
and the dance intensifies
the steps we’ve danced before
are too familiar and unmitigatedly unwelcome

we turn and dip, this direction then that
an intimate tango
with each dip, my stomach rebels
the dips so deep my head ricochets off the floor

he shows no pity
but dances the dance his sadistic way
and when I am beyond spent, he departs
without so much as a bow at the end

Migraine is a merciless partner
a relentless partner
a murderess I would gladly become
if only I could slay him

What about you? Are you thinking about entering a poem in the contest? You can find the rules and a link to the online submission form on Putting Our Heads Together Poetry Contest 2011 Rules and Information.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.


  • Claire Ganz
    8 years ago

    Good thing you can’t enter. You’d always win! :-0

  • Kathleen Waits
    8 years ago

    Migraines are so different to each person and often mirgaines can be different each time for each person – maybe you can share your experiences and help others understand what they are like for you.

  • Teri Robert
    8 years ago

    I hope a lot of people join us, Kathleen. You too!

    8 years ago

    Don’t forget to enter the 2011 Poetry Contest! Teri shares one of her own poems for some extra inspiration.

  • Teri Robert
    8 years ago

    Hope you’ll give it a shot too, Susan.

  • Teri Robert
    8 years ago

    Great, Laura! Looking forward to reading it.

  • Susan E Clegg
    8 years ago

    Longing to read some of the wonderful poems I hope are going to be created..

  • Laura L Sing
    8 years ago

    Thanks for posting – I hadnt seen about this! I’ll write something up tonight!!!

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