February 28, 2014
Does it feel weird having an imaginary tea party interview with yourself?
Yes, yes it does.
What type of house did you live in, architecturally?
I grew up in too many houses (houses, apartments, a camper van). Some were broken, but the first one wasn’t. It had a round turquoise pool, and rose gardens everywhere.
Oh, architecturally? Shit! Ah, the first one was a white plaster house, wood framed, residential. We kept pickles and wine in the cellar. Or maybe the pickles and wine were in our neighbours cellar? No matter.
What is your favourite season?
Autumn. Obsessively. Entirely.
What are your favourite words?
Molasses, susurrus, sorcery, fluorescent, arbutus, peridot, conjure, haunt, imagination, prickle, ghost, pumpkin, frost, impress, cerulean, lemon, rind, champagne, nebula, magellanic, gold, grey, storm, thistle, wool, about, you. I like words that take your mouth for a ride.
Who are some of your favourite writers?
Pat Lowther, Eugenio Montale, Susan Minot, Rumi.
Tell us about your second book, impress?
impress for me was a sudden storm, as I call it. It was a great moan, a great stretch after a long lived slumber for me. It was some three years in-between my first book, Eternal Autumn Within, which was released with Erbacce Press, in November of 2009, and impress. So for me, impress was a coming back into myself. It very much was a return to the publishing world. And in that time there was so much change, so many tribulations and tests of time. Which is evident in this collection I feel. I tried to be honest, I tried to emanate the spirits of the people that mean the most around me and put it to voice in a very singular first person way, which I have always felt the reader favours well.
impress is a mark indented upon something, or rather something being pressed against another to be left branded in some way. So for me, the title of impress came very spontaneously as an easy epiphany. There was absolutely no premeditation in the formulation of the poems in impress. It was a sudden storm, one that took me into its ways. And it was an easy dissolve. In summation, impress reinvented the writer I am today.
What have you heard (if anything) that other people are saying about impress?
I have heard here or there a phrase that my writing is cosmic impressionism, enough times now, that my ears perk up like the ears of corn.
And I have heard a great deal of times, people say cunningly that ‘impress has impressed them’. Ha.
What can you say about the modern literary scene, and about the rising artists within it?
That we are living in a remarkably accessible time, aren’t we?
I mean, we are in a time where no matter where the artist lives, his rooted tangle maze extends globally into a network, of not anti social artists, but socially networking artists who are interactive and proactive and who stand firm for one another. We are in a time of opportunities, and also of a time inflexed with a surge of art that does not hide shyly now, so we have ample competition in the publishing game.
We live in a time where artists look out for one another, and celebrate each other’s success as if each and every one is our own. Because it is. We need art to live on.
As for rising artists? I certainly have a star filled cloud in my mind as to who they are, and who will stand the tests of time, and be relevant on the shelves long after this modern scene dies down into some other.
Do you have anything else on the go?
I do have other projects on the go currently, though I don’t want to say too much as they haven’t currently be signed onto any press. But I will say this much, I have new poetry collections forthcoming, as well as a fiction or two forthcoming.
What else do you do with your time?
I’m a montessori teacher. I teach early primary (EP) to little glowing lantern children who tug at the bottoms of my shirt sleeves and dress.
What are your greatest memories?
The surreal and painless midnight when my son, Te Rahparah, was born takes the cake of course. My son is my greatest inspiration, he is my sun.
But I also have this very small but fond memory of watching and listening to autumn leaves falling out of a tree and the tiny brass orchestra of a nut kerplunking to pavement and bouncing through traffic lines through the smudged blur of white and red lights. Also there was this time I saved a crow.
What is your worst memory?
Watching my father die of cancer at fifteen on Father’s Day.
What will you do with your day today?
There was this time when there was a grand stormy day in my town, and everyone crowded into the coffee shop I was in to hide from the weather, to somehow try to wait it out. They looked out the window hoping for a break, a tear, that never came that day. And I watched as a man came in for a coffee, then went to leave into the storm coatless, and said on his way out to everyone crowding in “Enjoy the storm.” and he danced into the blur of torrential rain and lightning. And I smiled, packed up and followed him out.
Today is another storm. And I will go out and enjoy my storm.