Power of words: Former NH student writes, publishes books of poetry


         Former NH student Chloe Henkel has written three poetry books, ‘Paper Scraps’, ‘Love as a Distinct Possibility’, and ‘Sick Day’. Each one was edited and published all on her own. 

     Henkel says the book ‘Paper Scraps’ is split into two sections.  “The first section, ‘The Fog’ is about feeling lost and hopeless, the second section ‘The Stars’ is about finding light and healing.”  

     She added that the second book ‘Love as a Distinct Possibility’ is all about love poems. The writer comments that it is also divided into different sections, switching back and forth between describing the ups and downs of love and heartbreak.  

     The third book ‘Sick Days’ (not released yet) is a book of poetry about mental illness based on her own experiences living with anxiety, depression, OCD, and trichotillomania. 

     The writer said she didn’t actually intend on writing a book. Henkel said she would write poems on her phone “as a way to cope with my anxiety and depression.” They started to pile up, “with thousands and thousands of words” and she wanted to share them with people so that’s “where I got the idea to make into a book.”

   She said  “the hardest thing about it [writing/publishing/editing the books] wasn’t the words but learning how to  format and design the book. The whole process from start to finish took about a year.”

     Henkel describes her  book ‘Paper Scraps’ are “ short poetry about universal feelings. A lot of people don’t like short modern poetry. But I personally find it to be a great way of expressing thoughts and feelings in a way that more modern readers will be interested in.” 

     She says, “I started writing this one [‘Love as a Distinct Possibility’] after I finished ‘Paper Scraps’, although a lot of poems in it are ones that I thought were too embarrassing or too personal to include in ‘Paper Scraps’. I wrote a lot of love poetry but was hesitant to share it.” 

     Henkel said she had a hard time being vulnerable with her own heart in a book, but “I honestly learned a lot about how I view love and relationships by writing about it.” 

     With ‘Sick Days’, she wanted to write this book because reading about other people’s experiences about mental illness has helped her understand her own, and because “there are a lot of issues I’ve dealt with that I really wished other people had talked/written about, but that I couldn’t find anywhere,” so Henkel said she decided to be the conversation starter.