Author Robin L Harvey’s first poetry collection, “PTSD Poems to Slay Demons,” tells of one trauma survivor’s journey with mental illness, child abuse and addiction, through to rebirth, self-love, reconciliation and joy.  The heartfelt and emotional work is at times earth-shattering and raw. 

However, Harvey never loses her wit, sense of humour and the absurd, showing us that when we can laugh and cry over our traumas, we can survive to thrive. This book is for you if you want to reflect on Harvey’s bedrock belief that no matter how troubled our pasts may have been, they need not define who we are or how we live. 

The book contains free-verse, lyrical poems divided into five themed sections as well as a whimsical postscript.

 “The Girl That Was” launches the collection and comprises poems about her struggle to survive child abuse, mental illness and addiction and dissects the dysfunctional dynamics of family trauma. 

Next comes the section, “Love on The Rocks” – poems that detail the damage trauma inflicts on romantic and intimate relationships. 

This is followed by “Tennyson was Wrong” – uplifting love poems that paint a picture of a reconstructed, healthy 21st century woman who now lives a life of love, redemption and wellbeing. 

Next, Harvey has included the section, “Tell Us Why, Y Chromosomes?” – covering topics of date rape, domestic abuse, online pornography and women’s struggle with body image. 

This is followed by, “Lockdown, Unlimited” – poems that reflect the personal and political trauma the world experienced during the COVID-19 pandemic, which coincided with Harvey’s writing of the collection. 

The work closes with a whimsical epilogue about the universal dilemma writers face when trying to fairly assess and express their creativity.



"Courageous and relentlessly honest, these are poems to console readers battling their own demons. Robin Harvey has been there. She gets it."
Rona Maynard
Author and former editor of Chatelaine magazine.
"...a fine wordsmith who senses a good story and cuts right through to what matters."
Linwood Barclay
Best-selling author
"...a great, solid manuscript … that is ready to fly."
Richard Scarsbrook, selected Harvey for the Letter of Distinction.
Humber faculty mentor, author and poet
"An awesome poet!” -
Pete Walker
Licensed psychotherapist, with degrees in Social Work and Counseling Psychology who has written numerous books about PTSD including the best-seller, Complex PTSD: From Surviving to Thriving.