I’ve never really thought of myself as a poet until recently. Looking back on my life I realize that I have probably spent more time writing poetry than any other type of literary work.
Poetry consumed me as a teenager. I couldn’t get enough of it. My reading favourites included Walt Whitman, Edgar Allan Poe, Jim Morrison, William Blake… anything I could get my hands on at the library.
I spent hours in my room crafting horrible love poems to boys or venting my frustrations and angers into hidden mysteries. I allowed my state of mind to spill on the page, often times recklessly and without abandon.
However, since becoming a mother my poetry has lapsed quite a bit. Juggling my time between family, home and work has left me with little wiggle room to write. With my new found fiction focus (I had never written a fiction story until starting Valterra in 2014), storytelling has now taken over my psyche. I am in constant idea mode; always seeing details and people around me as characters and situations I can put them in. So my poetry has taken a hard hit.
Yet when I do write, I always find that it’s about something that is deeply troubling me or something very intimate or personal, like a dream or a fantasy, or my hopes and fears. Whether it be a relationship or a world issue, poetry is where I transform my feelings into words. It’s almost a release of tension versus a battle for perfection. The way the words roll off my tongue and collide with the rhythm I create, it’s therapeutic. I guess it always has been.
Whenever I finish a poem, I either love it or hate it. For me, there’s nothing in between. Nonetheless, I’ve never trashed a poem. I may not share it with anyone if it’s really bad, but sometimes bad poetry is fun to read.
Some of the poems in my Grunge Girl Diaries on Wattpad are pretty bad but they are also juvenile and honest. There are a few hidden gems but I’ve shared most of them to stay authentic to myself at that age, for the diaries sake. I almost feel grateful that I have them to look back on and remember all the turmoil and angst I felt and all the infatuation and romance of my high school crushes. I’m glad I can share them and not be embarrassed about it. It’s my history after all.
So I guess I am a poet. Maybe not a full-time poet, the only thing I’m really full-time at is being a mother and a wife, all the rest just falls into place when I move from here to there and back again.
Yet poetry is a constant. That’s why I decided to go for it and submit some poems for publication. I chose Arc Poetry Magazine. It’s a popular Canadian publication that features the best emerging poets, mostly from Canada. They had a call-out for submissions regarding Art in the End Times which I felt I had the perfect poem for, plus a couple others for their a later issue, most likely Winter 2017.
Wish me luck! I’ll keep you posted in this and my other publishing endeavours.