Poems in the Waiting Room (NZ) is a Dunedin based arts in health charity.

Our aim is to provide a free source of well-chosen poetry for; patients waiting for medical appointments, rest home residents waiting for meals, outings or appointments, hospice patients and their families and prison inmates.

The poetry cards, A4 sized three-fold cards, feature between eight and ten poems. New editions of the cards are printed and distributed every season. Poems include those from contemporary poets (especially New Zealand writers), older poems, a haiku, and poems for children. They are selected for readers’ enjoyment and are in no way a vehicle for delivering any social/health messages. The cards may be read and left on site or taken away for sharing or further reading.

The original print run of 500 cards in 2008 was limited to Dunedin medical practices. Over the years the print run has gradually increased as we’ve spread out from Dunedin. We currently print 8000 cards every season and distribute them throughout New Zealand.

Each seasonal edition is also transcribed into braille and distributed as booklets to members of our sight impaired community.

We currently send new cards, every quarter, to 453 rest homes, 644 medical practices, 8 prisons, 26 hospices, the SDHB,  contributing poets, and interested individuals.

PitWR(NZ) relies solely on donations and successful applications to trusts/companies to fund its two costs – postage and printing.



9 Responses to About

  1. dfb says:

    Hi Ruth – I love your poems on ‘Shot Glass Journal’. Wonderful and inspiring.

  2. ruth arnison says:

    Thanks David. I enjoyed the opportunity to read your poems and visit your website – Great art!!

  3. jik says:

    We love your project and thought you might like to know that you’ve had a mention in our poetry blog at http://boyntonpoetrycontest.wordpress.com/2013/02/20/while-you-were-waiting/.

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  5. keith nunes says:

    Hi Ruth
    Love this venture. Awesome idea. Wondered about the 2015 competition?
    Warm regards,
    Keith Nunes

    • ruth arnison says:

      Hi Keith
      Booksellers NZ are unable to sponsor the competition this year so I’m scurrying around looking for another sponsor. I’ll be advertising the competition details late October on my blog, via poetry groups and libraries. Many thanks for your interest. Cheers Ruth

  6. Hi Ruth

    My contact James Norcliffe let me know about your organisation and competition. My latest book Timelord Dreaming: tweetems from ward 8b would be an ideal addition to your organisation’s work. We would be delighted to work on an arrangement whereby your organisation would receive a share of all sales. Though located in Australia, we are distributed in New Zealand by Wheelers, TLS and Ingram International. The title is available in eBook formats as well as paperback. For more information: http://tinyurl.com/o8p2au6

  7. Pingback: Hagley Writers' Institute » Blog Archive » Poems in the Waiting Room competition

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