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Vietnam veteran uses poetry to heal, starts Veterans Writing Project

"Sometimes people just need a place to go and talk and vent a little bit. Share stories. It's amazing how that helps."

LAKE VILLAGE, Ark. (KTHV) – A Vietnam Veteran is helping veterans cope with post-traumatic stress disorder through poetry.

Ken Lambert knows the pain of war all too well. Dealing with flashbacks and tough memories, he needed to find a way that would help manage the stress.

"I've been writing since I was in high school. It's still an avenue for me to get feelings on paper that I don't talk about,” Lambert said.

Poetry provides him comfort -- his words telling his story about his difficult past.

“Sometimes people just need a place to go and talk and vent a little bit. Share stories. It’s amazing how that helps,” Lambert said.

Lambert said poetry saved his life. So, he decided to start the Delta Veterans Writing Project.

“It’s an attempt to bring some sort of mental health services to the Delta area. Right now Pine Bluff is the closest place that has mental health capacity for veterans,” he said.

Lambert is encouraging other veterans to write down their thoughts on paper because he said it can be a good form of therapy.

"The basics of it is to stave off some of that 22 veterans a day that commit suicide and give them an outlet,” he said. "It's through that shared experience that people really start to open up and work on some of our issues."

Lambert plans on meeting with veterans once a month to discuss their writing, in hopes of saving even just one life.

He said sometimes veterans open up more when talking to other veterans.

"We're not counselors and we don't have the licenses for that. But we can talk and we can listen and it's the most important part,” Lambert said.

If you live in the Delta area, Lambert is having his first veteran get together on July 2 at 6 p.m. in Lake Village at the Market Place.

If you can't make it, he encourages others to reach out to him on Facebook.