The medical writer Baptiste Beaulieu signs a new collection of poetry entitled “Joy and the rest”. He was released this Thursday and addressed the issues of medicine, homosexuality and religion, with humor and tenderness.
When he is not working in his general practitioner practice, when he does not keep his columns in the program “Grand bien vous faire” on France Inter, the Toulousain Baptiste Beaulieu writes. He has just released a collection of poetry “Joy and the rest” (ed. Iconopop).
After “Don’t be afraid. Never ”, why is this new collection, poetry ultimately a form of expression that suits you well?
I am a storyteller, I love to bring people into my world, to keep them going by telling them a story that seems fascinating to me. But the deep heart of what I write, of what I am, is poetry. I will give all my novels for a single collection of poems.
This is the way that I have found to be the most true to myself.
When do you find the time to write?
As soon as I have a minute. I write anywhere on a notebook or my phone. I learned this during my time consuming medical studies.
Is writing a form of outlet from everything you encounter in your doctor’s office?
It is above all a form of homage that I pay to the human beings who cross my path, in my office, with their stories, their sufferings. It is also a way of sublimating it and of telling the story of humanity in a poetic way so that readers can make it their own. A poem is fuzzy enough that the reader can stick his own truth to it. It is a universal language. With “Joy and the rest”, I wanted to write something beautiful that resonates with people’s daily lives.
Does writing, by the distance it allows, make you better?
In any case, it allows me to think against myself, to do a certain introspection and to connect with other lives than mine. To write, you have to be empathetic.
In this collection, you approached religion, medicine and homosexuality from which you never really hid …
Absolutely. But being part of a minority sexual orientation, just like holding the hand of the wrong person on the street, I never prepared it from a poetic angle. I never hid myself as an activist, but as a poet.
On the other hand, is religion new?
Yes, this is something I never talked about. It is complicated at many times because it is very polarized. I have always felt neither Catholic nor Christian, but very close to Jesus, who is a very inspiring model.
Do you seem to be more and more militant?
It is the time which wants that because it is more and more mad, and dangerous, in particular on the political level. If we keep quiet, we let others vomit. From time to time, it’s good to have contrasting speeches. I believe in punching the table, whether it’s with novels, radio columns or even poetry.