Bottled up Zen (Mark)
Location: Savannah Georgia
My desire to become a writer extends far before I was able to even read or write for the root of all art, not just writing, performance or even visual, is the imagination. A vivid imagination and an unbridled passion are the birth of every artist. My child hood was combination of isolation and adventure brought on from a family that was constantly moving and leaving me with few friends but endless opportunities to indulge in my own private universes. From these moments I did what all artists probably did, I went where my imagination lead me. In my case I didn’t pick up a paint brush and expel my feelings onto canvas, I chose to put words on paper and attempt to explain exactly what was going on in my head. Poetry as it turns out was the a result of laziness, for what is poetry but a lazy man’s fiction? Beginning to write when I was around 14 I lacked the ambition to complete a full novel and so I chose to condense my thoughts. At first they were small poems, the attempts of a young boy to try and impress the girls. When this didn’t work I then figured I’d just call myself a musician then these words became lyrics to songs. The literature I read was not primarily focused on poetry at the time, I was more immersed with graphic novels and fiction novella. Some of my favorite authors were and still are Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, and C.S Lewis and Roald Dahl. Around the age of 16 I discovered E.E Cummings and would mark this as the beginning of my love affair with poetry. Once these flood doors opened I immersed myself with all the classic figures of poetical literature, including the likes of Sylvia Plath, and Robert Frost. My early years of writing poetry were basically me trying my best to emulate the surrealism and abstraction that I loved from Cummings. I was impressed with the aesthetics and the idea of disobeying grammar and using specific words and phrases in a non linear way to expose emotions and ideas to the reader. I continued with this style until I moved to a small town in north western Pennsylvania and was inspired by the scenery and people. Eventually my style began moving more towards prose, my attempts to capture how I see the everyday world. I believe in evolution though and the importance of allowing yourself to change and embracing those intrinsic qualities on one’s art. I’ve been visiting the late night poetry chat room since around 2005-6 and deeply value the relationships i’ve developed in the room. I personally view the room as a wonderful source of creativity and artistic input. In a world where poetry has become under ground and AOL almost abandoned, the idea of a poetic community forming on it is almost so far removed from the main stream something more like a family develops then a community.
Some of Zens favorite music:
Charles Mingus, John Coltrane, Eric Dolphy,
Mahavishnu Orchestra, James Brown, Tom Waits
…….zen is one of the writers I first recognized in these rooms as being a really good writer. …..sorry…I’m not qualified enough to recognize a great writer….so I’ll just have to say here……he’s most excellent…and he encouraged me a couple times….and I appreciated that…….party on Garth….