3 participants in the workshop sat at table

Steel Forests

Recently, LGBT Foundation’s Liverpool Sexual Health team ran ‘Steel Forests’ – a poetry workshop which explored how LGBTQIA+ people can use themes such as ‘SCI-FI’ and ‘Nature’ to create their own Queer Utopias within their poetry. These queer Utopias were used to explore their thoughts and feelings more freely within their own minds and bodies.

This workshop was all about creating more holistic and safer spaces where conversations can be facilitated around sexual health and well-being. A main objective for Elijah over at the sexual health team in Liverpool.

LGBTQIA+ people can struggle with talking about their intimacies and their bodies. Growing up, there can be a lot of shame and stigma they carry through their bodies. If people lose connection with their bodies, their desires; life can become increasingly difficult to navigate.

Creative practices and spaces can be a great way to facilitate a more open and safer space to understand one’s feelings, as well as the wider community’s. Especially more complicated ones around bodies and what people do with them.

Using the natural world and a world of re-imagination through sci-fi, people found it easier to let go of shame and stigma felt. This led them to be able to create their own avenues of ‘Queer Hope and Joy’, through the freedom of imagination. No limitations were placed on pleasure, sex and the body.

This workshop was kindly held in Liverpool Central Library and led by facilitators and poet’s Ollie Ade and Elijah Tiger.

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