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Spotlight Poet…..

Screen name: Bitterbud

Age: 18

Where are you from? : My mother will very vehemently claim me as Welsh!

Favourite poet(s): Anne Sexton and Marion McCready

Favourite poem: ‘I Am’ by John Clare – it’s stunning. I really connect with it.

 

I Am!

BY JOHN CLARE

I am—yet what I am none cares or knows;

My friends forsake me like a memory lost:

I am the self-consumer of my woes—

They rise and vanish in oblivious host,

Like shadows in love’s frenzied stifled throes

And yet I am, and live—like vapours tossed

 

Into the nothingness of scorn and noise,

Into the living sea of waking dreams,

Where there is neither sense of life or joys,

But the vast shipwreck of my life’s esteems;

Even the dearest that I loved the best

Are strange—nay, rather, stranger than the rest.

 

I long for scenes where man hath never trod

A place where woman never smiled or wept

There to abide with my Creator, God,

And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept,

Untroubling and untroubled where I lie

The grass below—above the vaulted sky.

~

When did you first start writing? : When I was 15

 

What was your first poem about?:  It was about questioning whether or not God exists.

 

What inspires you as a poet? : I get inspired by a lot of different things. I love Dostoyevsky and I get inspired by a lot of the topics he touches upon in his books. This is what I love to do: I take a character, develop them in my mind and then address issues – personal or societal – through them. I’m a very private person and I find it very difficult to express myself but I find it easier to do so through the medium of someone else. Most of my poems are addressed to someone in particular and I express myself through their actions.

 

How did you get to this stage in your writing? : I was very nervous about joining AllPoetry but it was the best decision I could have made. The supportive environment really helped me to blossom and there are so many inspirational people and poems to come across that will always ignite my muse in some way or other.

Some adlibbed writing about yourself: I love my dog.

 

Links to published works: 

Bitterbud AllPoetry

LateNightPoets

 

Share a few of your favourite poetry resources: The Poetry Foundation, Poemhunter, there are so many!

 

Which poet do you feel has influenced you most? : Definitely Anne Sexton

 

What methods have worked best for you? : I don’t know, I don’t think I have a method. Sometimes I get fixated on a word and it soon becomes a sentence with then that becomes a stanza and subsequently can be expanded on. It usually begins with a little something that just pops into my head.

 

Share your own favourite write…

 

stepping-stone skyscrapers and delicious defilement

~~~~~~~~~~~~

 I’ll stitch your face across my eyes

 with penetrating needles

 that impregnate me

 with you.

 

 I can feel your universe swell inside me –

 the world is mine to birth;

 mine to nurture.

 

 I’ll shake out the creases in my mind

 that tell me how much more important reality is

 

 and replace my breath with yours.

 

 ii.

 You crack your knuckles on my spine and

 sever my intestines with your teeth,

 forcing bibles into old crates

 and crucifixes into boxes under the bed

 

 but I love it.

 

 You whisper in my ear

 every time I turn my back on you

 because you’re like treacle

 tracing your fingers along my neck

 venom dripping into my mouth

 as I sip on your words.

 

 How cliché would it be

 to call you ‘beloved?’

 

 iii.

 I’ll martyr myself

 with my delusion of you

 and maybe some cream-cakes

 to blunt the double-sided machete.

 

 You wrap yourself in my benedictions

 as you exploit me:

 your messenger to the world.

 

 iv.

 Each murmured word,

 each uttered idea

 ripples beneath our haze

 of fluttering fingers

 that conduct our conversations

 

 (you’re the only one I’d ever tell).

 

 I build myself inside your arms –

 our little world walled in

 and encapsulated

 like medicine

 compounded or encased in a pill

 

 and we build our brittle mansion

 with paper bricks and cocktail sticks

 that prick flesh and pierce pores.

 

 v.

 We hijack carousels

 in our new tradition

 and fold time like linen

 placing it so perfectly in the dark,

 closing the lid

 of the trunk at the bottom of the bed –

 never to be opened again.

 

 We are well-versed in

 the art of capitulation,

 you and I,

 caring about nothing

 and worrying about everything.

 

 We know so little –

 our ignorance allows us

 to be careless.

 

 vi.

 I split every second

 into a million little pieces and

 scatter them around the room,

 watching them land on your fingertips

 

 you are always standing

 in the middle of them all.

 

 If sanctuary was an adjective,

 it would describe you perfectly.

 

 vii.

 At night, moonbeams behead you

 and you make your deathbed

 on empty bottles and paper bags

 in the corner of my room.

 I can hear your bones clicking

 as you gather your many disciples

 (my ever-eager dreams)

 to reincarnate yourself in the morning.

 

 viii.

 When the shy sky’s smoke

 is rudely shunned

 and blue is cracked open by the sun,

 Clemmy screams –

 knotting her hair

 instead of plaiting it,

 hating exposure.

 

 We coat ourselves with dead seeds

 and neurotically bitten fingernails

 and wrap our fragile hearts

 in deceiving steel

 that will shatter even faster

 than our pseudo-reality.

 

 ix.

 The rusty sky

 rimmed with rain-drops

 strains against the empty air

 in a desperate bid

 not to collapse

 

 but we don’t care if it does.

 

 You put your arms around me

 to form a ribcage

 and hold me

 as I flutter and shiver.

 

 We get drunk on rain

 and drown in puddles

 

 always over-thinking,

 building ourselves unbreakable walls

 of toxic ideas that end up trapping us.

 

 x.

 You’re all I ever see.