The gift of poetry: pharmacy swept off its feet with orders after mention in Christmas gift guide

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The Poetry Pharmacy in Shropshire, which offers “poetry on prescription – an alternative therapy for your emotional ailments”, has been swamped with orders after appearing in a national newspaper Christmas gift guide.

The Pharmacy’s Deborah Alma said on Facebook: “We're really shocked and pleased to have been included in this Guardian gift guide but we were getting orders every minute yesterday, too many to cope with. Apologies to anyone wanting to order anything over the next few days. We had to make everything out of stock while we catch up!”

The Guardian guide said of one gift idea: “These pills are not for swallowing but contain poetic extracts on the theme of nature, such as a few lines from The Peace of Wild Things by Wendell Berry. Other poetry prescriptions available, £5.50 poetrypharmacy.co.uk.”

The Pharmacy, based at Bishop’s Castle, found itself listed as one of the Guardian’s “20 sustainable present ideas”, and said in another post on Instagram: “We are delighted to have featured on the Guardian Gift Guide, but as a very small business we are now out of stock of many products. Please bear with us as a team of elves work on fulfilling our current orders. We will update products as they comeback in stock over the next week. Thank you for your patience!”

The pharmacy’s website refers to the “the world’s first walk-in Poetry Pharmacy. This beautiful Victorian shop with its original shelves & mahogany counter is filled with poetry, philosophy and well-being books and ‘pills’ and other literary gifts and products, to address your emotional needs. Your Poetry Pharmacist will be able to prescribe suitable philtres and tonics, and you will also be able to visit the Dispensary Cafe to be prescribed coffees, teas and tisanes, sodas, sherbets and seltzers to lift the spirits.”

◄ Poet donates copies of book to raise cash for food bank at Christmas

Be Feared: Jane Burn, Nine Arches Press ►

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