Corinna West has survived multiple suicide attempts and overcome 12 psychological diagnoses and a serious weed habit — doctors gave her other drugs, up to six prescriptions at a time. West takes none of them now and says she's alive because she found her own medicine. "We all have personal medicine as opposed to pill medicine," she says. "Personal medicine is what we do, what gives us the will to survive, what makes us get out of bed every morning. That's our personal power." She derives strength from poetry, bicycling, judo, and helping others heal themselves. Another way that West spreads her theory of self-healing is by organizing Poetry for Personal Power
, a series of spoken-word events during which performers riff on what gets them through tough times. West emcees two of these interactive performances this week: today at noon at Avila University's Marian Center (11901 Wornall, 816-501-3660), with Sarah "Miss Conception" Glass, and at 7 p.m. Friday, March 16, at UMKC's student union (5100 Cherry, 816-235-1406). See poetryforpersonalpower.com
for more information.