Happy National Poetry Month! It’s day 28 (that means there’s two days left) and today’s interviewee and all the way from Johannesburg, South Africa, is David Klompas!:
What is your current poetry diet?
The past month and a bit has been frantic, as I’ve recently begun a new job. My poetry diet has been interrupted, and quite frankly I’m beginning to starve.
John Donne is my favourite dead poet at this point; his strong visual style and blunt wit fascinate me.
Who is your favorite living poet? Why?
Timothy Downey is my favorite living poet at this time; his postmodern style deals with themes of disillusionment with the modern world which fascinate me.
Should a reader have to work hard to understand the meaning of a poem?
Poetry is all about communication between the poet and the reader. In order for a successful communication to happen, both reader and poet must put in effort.
So yes, a reader should work to understand a poem, because only by actively engaging with a given work will they be able to form their own interpretation. This interpretation is vital in the message conveyed by the poet.
What does poetry mean to you?
The written word is powerful beyond belief; it holds leaders accountable, overthrown oppression and upholds truth and justice. It is poetry’s job to make sure that the reflections of any given point in history are preserved in a form that is cryptic enough to pass buy a hate fueled oppressor but not too cryptic that some effort won’t unearth the message within the poem.