"What creativity means to me"

Hi Everyone,

I was recently asked to contribute to a short article in a local magazine (I live near the north Norfolk coast) on creativity along with a singer, a sculptor, and two visual artists.

As a newcomer to this online community, I can't think of a better way to launch myself than to reproduce my portion of that piece here, to give a flavour of what I'm about. Needless to say, this isn't the whole story, but it's a good jumping off point, and I'm sure will provide plenty to discuss.

All the best

Dave R


"Creativity". Despite its connotations of godlike design, control and order, for me it's a teasing, frustrating, and playful force, mostly because omniscience doesn't actually get you very far in poetry. For me the creative process begins with tuning into intuitions and impulses - whatever is around me at the time - and only then slowly bringing these elements into focus. In my own practice, the poem itself is the leading force; it selects its own materials, shapes itself to its own best expression, and ultimately determines its own "meaning". My first duty seems to be to interfere in that process as little as possible; I'm a facilitator for something that's struggling to find its own identity.

Because words have plasticity, they can produce startling, often unexpected effects in different combinations which can take our everyday common currency, language, and lift it into different realms of communication. Hence "meaning" in inverted commas - the poem is the expression of, and the key to its own existence, so that the poet ideally disappears, and the words, the experience, stand by themselves without need of help or justification. What I strive for as a poet is to take my reader through the self-same journey of discovery that I have made and to have this experience directly enacted in him or her - "proved upon our pulses" as Keats memorably stated.
Sun, 12 Feb 2017 05:30 pm
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