The Write Out Loud Poem of the Week is 'Lie With Poetry' by Becky Who
This week's Poem of the Week is 'Lie With Poetry' by Becky Who, a beautiful ode to poetry and all it does for us. Beginning with the line 'If I could lie with poetry as if beside a lover' this wonder of rhyme and rhythm flows beautifully throughout. Here we have the joy of poetry, the escapism, the catharsis and, by the final lines, the primal urge to write, to heal through sharing.
Below, Becky tackles our Q&A and reveals her passion for music and more;
How do you feel your poetry has progressed since you began writing?
I started out mostly writing slam poetry, intended for oral performance. Joining the Write Out Loud site last summer encouraged me to start writing more "page poetry" and experiment with new forms and ways of playing with words. I am finding that as with anything, writing improves with repeated practice, and I think my style is evolving and improving into something more refined - due to reading more poetry, and experimenting with stricter poetic forms such as haiku, cinquain and villanelle (haven't tried a sonnet yet). I would really like to keep improving my technique somehow.
Who do you write poetry for?
Me, I think, first of all. But if I have the urge to share my texts, via WOL, YouTube or Instagram, it is in the hope that others can find something that will interest or touch them, and be able to take something away for themselves. As well as for feedback purposes of course.
Do you have any other creative hobbies apart from poetry?
I spent most of my youth training to be a musician (a flutist), and when the opportunity arises I still play a little. Music is extremely important to me and I think that shapes my approach to poems.
What was the last poetry book you read?
"Division Street" by Helen Mort. I've been seeking to learn from reading more poetry, and I'm really glad I discovered her work - I find it very thoughtful and refined. She does that thing of "capturing a moment" which some people would say is the main aim of poetry, and her poems are skillfully varied in rhythm, rhyme and texture.
If you could send one poem in to space to best represent humanity what would it be and why?
I'm not sure I'm well-read enough yet to answer this question. Can I be silly and say "The Ning Nang Nong" by Spike Milligan? Actually as a metaphor for humanity it probably works quite well.
Lie With Poetry
by Becky Who
If I could lie with poetry as if beside a lover,
Rhymes like arms to hold me, laden pages as a cover
between me and my reality, the truth I try to hide,
Too feeble for the malice of the world that waits outside.
If I could lie with poetry as if upon a lover,
Minds meeting as hearts beat to find the rhythm of the other,
Words caressing skin, or tasting sweet on lips so red,
A burdened love beginning in the world inside my head.
If I could lie with poetry as if with one I love,
I’d wish the ecstasy of text to lift me far above
this earthly realm so ponderous, that feeds, each passing day
the curséd monster in us that scares poetry away.
But poetry’s the razorblade that’s creeping near a vein,
As if to block out real grief by seeking abstract pain,
As if my blackened thoughts could ever leak in blood so red,
As if the need to bleed could free the poet in my head.