Introducing William Dean Ford
William Dean Ford is a versatile poet and spoken word performer, providing a weekly ‘Poetry Prescription’ in response to the uncertainties we all face in these difficult times. His creative journey began with writing to cope with social phobia, anxiety, depression and agoraphobia that developed over many years of living alone after growing up ‘in care’.
Ironically, his experiences have meant he has for a long time considered topics of living in isolation, deprivation and uncertainty about what the future holds in order to gain the perspective to survive them. Hopefully his words will strike a chord with people experiencing similar feelings, albeit for different reasons.
Humorous/satirical writing was crucial to William developing a ‘survival mindset’ and was the first kind of writing he shared at an open mic spoken word event. He continually faced his fears until he was able to connect with other people as himself, not just as a performer trying to make them laugh. This resulted in the kind of personal growth embodied by his words on permanent display in the foyer of the Llandough Hospital Mental Health Unit:
WE GROW BETTER TOMORROWS WHEN WE PLANT GOOD SEEDS TODAY
William has inspired others to share their own words, stressing via his personal story he was not always able to perform at or host spoken word events such as MEGAVERSE. Enjoying photography as well as writing, he never rests on his laurels and regularly seeks new creative prompts from life and from writing groups including Roath Writers and Bryan’s Angels. His work has appeared in anthologies produced by these groups, an award nominated collection (Half Moon: Poems about Pubs) and has previously self-produced booklets of extended story poems to sell at reading events.
William aims for the heart, and the funny bone, and does so regularly at Cardiff spoken word events including COMPANY OF WORDS, LYRICAL MIRACLES and WORD ASYLUM. He believes self-expression is a crucial survival tool for and that engaging with the self-expression of others is central to Social Cohesion. We are each one, we are also part of each other. Together, we are Society. All that can be felt, we can all feel, and when we remember that, we can never be alone.
Enjoy William’s Weekly Poetry here.
Artwork for William’s poetry is put together by the Art’s For Health and Wellbeing team at Cardiff and Vale University Health Board.