Learning to cope with Parkinson’s

Victor and Diane SUS-170821-144623001
Victor and Diane SUS-170821-144623001

A Hastings man has self-published a poetry book as part of his journey to help him manage living with Parkinson’s Disease.

Poems from the Heart is a collection of around 30 poems, about almost anything, that Victor Lawes started writing when he was first diagnosed 16 years ago.

Artwork for Victor's book SUS-170821-143455001

Artwork for Victor's book SUS-170821-143455001

He said: “The doctor told me to do whatever I wanted to do now, because I might not be able to do it later.”

So, Victor decided to continue painting as he had done most his life, and begin writing poetry.

With a couple of water-painted fishing boats featured on the front cover – pictures painted by Victor himself – Poems from the Heart is life for Victor since Parkinson’s.

Victor explains that “my hands stop shaking when I paint”, and he notices the same therapeutic effect when he’s writing poetry.

His wife, Diane, says that even though he’d never tried writing poetry before his Parkinson’s diagnosis, “the poems just seem to come from him, he loves it”.

She continued: “Some are funny, some are about the garden, some are about Parkinson’s – they’re all different.” Victor doesn’t forget to add that, “everyone thinks they’re good as well”.

A couple of the poems in the book are written by Victor’s grandson, and the artwork on the back of the book was created by his granddaughter, in the form of words that make up an image of Victor (pictured left).

Victor’s book can be bought on Amazon for £5.50, with all proceeds donated to Parkinson’s Disease Society.