Physician-poet Richard M. Berlin, MD, senior affiliate in psychiatry, is perhaps best known at UMass Medical School as the endower of the Gerald F. Berlin Writing Competition. Established by Dr. Berlin in honor of his late father, the competition puts talented creative writers, who are also medical and nursing students, residents and other aspiring health care professionals, in the spotlight. But on Wednesday, Sept. 19, Berlin will take center stage to talk about his own critically acclaimed poetry in a presentation entitled “Secret Wounds: The story of one physician’s journey.”
Berlin, who has received numerous poetry awards, will read selections from his most recently published collection. Secret Wounds won the 2010 John Ciardi Poetry Prize from the University of Missouri, Kansas City, and was chosen as the best poetry book of 2011 in the USA Book News Awards. He previously published How JFK Killed My Father, winner of the 2002 Pearl Poetry Award, and he used that cash award to established the Berlin Creative Writing Award at UMMS. He is also the author of two poetry chapbooks, Code Blue and The Prophecy. In addition to his poetry, Berlin, who specializes in liaison-consultation psychiatry for patients suffering from psychiatric complications of severe medical disorders, has authored more than 60 scientific papers, and has edited Sleep Disorders in Psychiatric Practice and Poets on Prozac: Mental Illness, Treatment, and the Creative Process.
Free and open to the public, the program is hosted by the Humanities in Medicine Committee of the Lamar Soutter Library. The reading and talk will begin at 6 p.m., preceded by a reception with light refreshments at 5:30 p.m. Following the formal presentation, Berlin will sign copies of Secret Wounds, which will be available for sale at the event. Visit the Lamar Soutter Library Web site for more information.