People ask me, how do you write poetry? Many of them assume that I go off somewhere in a little cottage in the country, and write in complete isolation. But the truth is, I write here, in my home in London.
Some poets need solitude because they’re creating something from nothing. They need to focus. I, on the other hand, need sound, noise, distraction. I need to defocus. I often write poetry whilst listening to BBC radio. It might be The Archers or the news; it really doesn’t matter. I sometimes listen to Welsh broadcasts and I don’t speak a word of Welsh.
For me, everything is just swirling around and once I lose my concentration, I can take what I need. It just comes to me. I’m not constructing something piece by piece. The poems arrive from the aether, fully formed.
Original photo by David Iliff.