June 30, 2011

Poetry and Politics

I'm a long term student of art and history and I history has shown art and politics as interdependant. Something to do with words, images, sounds and the things they symbolise that I can no longer articulate, means I'd rather read the work of modern African poets than try and decipher T.S. Eliot as beautiful as his work is. Eliot may has opened up my ideas about good writing but studying Okigbo and reading the poets in my The Penguin Book of Modern African Poetry have changed my ideas about humans, culture and oppression. I want my Poems to have messages aimed at changing the readers understanding of something but I also want it to wow, to be considered 'good' art as well as having a voice that needs to be heard. I have 4-5 of them and its taken over a year. One of them is long though so that counts for something. I am getting so impatient waiting for replies from people waiting to see if work is accepted, I just want to get them out.

I've had parts of 'Anti matter' in my head for most of the last year, they never feel finished but I am starting to want to move on from these sorts of poems and go back to writing more prose. The comedy violence novel, it should only take a decade or two to get right..

In 'Anti Matter' I wanted to try and contain a strong reminder to readers about Haut de la Garenne and the investigations in Jersey. I wanted to make people wonder about how those teeth got there and the fact that somebody somewhere knows. I will never forget the day the excavations were announced, sitting on floor of our room with the new carpet, my son crawling and drooling behind me as I wept. Also wanted to convey I sense of the strength I got from doing every I could do to resist.