Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Unearthing passions in poetry: it's time...

I've just seen a blog post by Fiona Moore about The Rialto and how they edit and pick their poems. I'm still fiddling with my own poems (I've collected up all journals/notebooks I've written in the last few years and starting to refine the poems inside them) and I'm in a stage where they never feel finished. I must learn to leave them alone but I can't. Maybe I should pluck up the courage and send some in to some magazines next year: I think have just discovered my New Year's resolution.

Recently, I've been reading 'trashy' novels (mainly a rebellion against the strict set texts that I had at University) which I have been reveling in but I'm now tempted back into the books I truly love. I think my rebellious streak has ended - I can now settle into being me again. Old, dusty books will always be there but right now I am yearning for a new, crisp spine of a freshly published book. And right now I'm craving philosophy and poetry. The philosophy side to this comes from my boyfriend - he loves it - and has inspired me to read more, but also to think more. The poetry side is me going back to what I loved during my years at University. I loved it then, and still love it now, but life got in the way, or rather, I was living a life without my true passions.

I have had a few suggestions from my poetry tutor, Carrie Etter (see her blog here) and upon her posts online, ordered Rhian Gallagher's Shift (2012) and now deciding on a few more. Maybe a review or two will appear here soon. Mostly, I am looking forward to writing again but I don't feel in a rhythm just yet. I like to read a lot in order to inspire me to write. When I'm not reading, my writing is rubbish. I was told by another tutor of mine, Tim Liardet, that reading is more important than writing, and he was right. You don't know where you writing stands if you don't read. You don't know what people are writing, you don't know the trends or the things to step away from. By reading other writing, you get a sense of your own writing and how you want it to stand out amongst the rest of it all. Also, the type of books you are reading rubs off in your own writing so by reading a whole range of writing will expand your writing horizons. Well, that's my theory anyway!

I'm off to Pascale Petit's poetry reading at Magdalen College, Oxford, tomorrow evening. I saw her last time a few years ago in Bath where Carrie introduced me to her so I am looking forward to hearing her talk again.

All I want to do at the moment (especially with all this cold weather) is hibernate and read until the chill makes way for spring. So that's what I'm going to do. Oh, and maybe cook a few nice meals.

ZP x

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