Pearl Pirie has 3 collections published and a bunch of chapbooks. Pirie was director of the Tree Reading Series and is president of regional haiku group KaDo, is on the organizing committee for VERSeFest and the board of Friends of Wakefield Library. www.pearlpirie.com or on twitter @pesbo.
How did you first engage with poetry?
Short Answer: Each moment is the start.
Long Answer: I always was around verses. I was reading the stuff in textbooks of the 1920s-1940s which I grew up on. It was in the antique books I collected, in the bible tracts that fell like plucked geese feathers around the house. In books given to me, the Fireside series from my father’s aunt.
The notion of Poetry is a weird one. Silence is poetry when well-timed. Jingles, songs, headlines, well-written dense prose, a well-phrased story or joke, all can have the same essence as poetry of dense musical ideas. Poetry constructs a need then meets it. A propaganda that soothes and/or stirs to action.
Poetry engages me when it stretch me with something I think I know, paired with something I think I don’t. It is something half-offered or fully offered that risks something that it doesn’t need to risk. Or offers a parable that needs reinforcing, such as: order or compassion or beauty are possible.