Joan Ellis: No Go

No Go is a beautiful story and poem by Joan Ellis about how attending a Nature and Wellbeing course changed her and her outlook on life in six weeks.

Nature and wellbeing course painting

In November 2018 I attended a 6 weeks creative course called Nature and Wellbeing in Victoria Community Centre in Sheffield.

No Go is my account of how this course changed me and my outlook on life in six weeks.  I mapped the journey of the course as a river, containing all the symbols of the poems and paintings I created and the banks of the river show the change in feelings as I went along.

I was very hesitant at first to attend because of bad associations to the area.  Also my initial expectation was that a course about ‘nature and wellbeing’ is probably one of those ‘airy-fairy’ courses that pretend to improve wellbeing.  After trying the course there was nothing airy fairy about the beneficial effects of it.  I think it will have a profound impact on me.

I was glad that I attended, and gradually began to be comfortable about sharing some of my experiences about emotions, place, and nature.  From having come from a very hard place I feel like I’m now flowing again. I’ve found a lot of relief in being able to express my feelings again.

I’ve been thinking about how much we have learned about each other and how much love and understanding of HUMANS in Nature we have shared.

No Go

I’ve been living in the Land of No Go for ages.

No Go Here.
No Go There.

A place where there is no parking.
Or enough petrol in the car.
A place for which you don’t the right footwear.
A place that’s always far too far.

No Go. Excuses.
No Go. Fear.

A place where you might start feeling
A place where you might be seen.
By someone who remembers your old life,
And will want to know how you’ve been.

No Go, Town.
No Go, Street.

But you travel there every night anyway.
Sleepily carried against your will.
And you live alone there for 8 hours solid.
And feel everything at full volume weird.

No Go; No Resistance.
No Go; Feels Futile.

Eventually I took the bus to No Go.
Heart in mouth; Bus Ticket in Hand
But I couldn’t find the No Go I remembered.
Streets and mind cleaned by rain and time.

No Go; No Monsters.
No Go; Not There.

No Go is no longer impossible.
Not straight away; don’t overdo.
New friends willing to come on the journey.
See the past clearly and begin a-new.

No Go; Going.
No Go; Gone.

There will always be a No Go in life.
Can’t always deal with things right now.
I am always tempted to avoid No Go.
But I won’t wait so long next time.

No Go; Go Soon.
Not No Go; Delay.
Just Go.

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