Writing and painting keeps resident happy in later life

Pauline with her book of poems
Pauline with her book of poems

Pauline Burgess, a resident at the Society’s supported home in Wigmore, Kent, is not only a talented poet, she also writes short stories and paints portraits, she opened up about what motivates her to keep creative in later life.


“I have always been creative and loved reading and writing, even when I was small,” Pauline says, “I never asked for teddies or dolls for Christmas, I wanted annuals! At school I loved English, I never liked any other subjects.”


For Pauline, expressing herself through creativity has remained a hobby throughout her life; she used to enter her short stories, poems and paintings into competitions at the village fetes and on the local radio.


“I won sometimes,” she says, “but it was only ever a hobby. I used to work as a typist in the war office in London, so I would always read on the train to and from work.”


Pauline was also part of her local Music and Drama Society and she would write pantomimes for them, featuring her own lyrics. She thinks perhaps in a different life she may have liked to be a songwriter.


Today, Pauline still enjoys writing letters to he friends and sometimes she sends them poems she has written. Her favourite author is Charles Dickens and she enjoys artwork created by French impressionists. She finds inspiration everywhere in daily life and has even written a poem about Drewery Drive housekeeper, Nick.


“Sometimes I am inspired by short articles in the newspaper, I usually like to write in a quirky and unique style. My paintings are mostly of people, some friends and family and some landscapes from holidays I took with my husband, but mostly I like to paint portraits.”


Pauline struggles with her handwriting now but insists she wouldn’t want to use a computer, as she likes the therapeutic feeling of writing on paper.


“It can help you through a bad day and keep your mind away from any bad things, letting my imagination run free keeps me happy.


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