POETRY IS A THOUGHT THAT FINDS THE RIGHT WORDS TO EXPRESS ITSELF. POETRY IS AN ART FORM THAT MUST BE PROTECTED AND FOR THIS, IS GROWING A NEW GENERATION OF PASSIONATE POETS LIKE JH HARD. IN THIS INTERVIEW THIS ARTIST TELLS ABOUT HIS VERSES AND WHAT IT MEANS TO BE A POET TODAY: FIND OUT MORE!
When did you realize that writing poetry would be your way?
I began writing probably 10 years ago, but never really thought much of poetry. About three years ago my great aunt, who was a professor of poetry, wrote me a haiku via email, and I responded to her with my own haiku and that was the first poem I ever wrote. From there we began doing it daily and eventually, I began venturing into other styles of poetry. That’s when I knew it was my thing.
Which poet or writer inspired you the most?
I pull inspiration from quite a few poets, but I would say primarily Charles Bukowski, Billy Collins, and Wallace Stevens. My old roommate introduced me to Elizabeth Bishop’s work so I would add her as well.
What is the word you use most in your poems?
Burn — I use that word far too often, actually. It is a beautiful word, though. Maybe I’m just obsessed with fire or my own existential demise.
How is a poem born?
I write my pieces at very random times. In my book “War, Over Easy”, about half of the poems were written on my phone while out doing things. I wrote the poem “Little Trampoline”, which is just about a girl, while sitting in my friend’s car minutes after we wrecked it, and I wrote “The Clarity in a Moment of Shock”, which is about a car wreck while lying in bed. There is no formula for a poem’s conception.
What does it mean to you to be a poet in 2018?
Being a poet in 2018 means cutting through all of the garbage. There are thousands of poets trying to make it on Instagram or elsewhere, and you have to find a way to break through the clutter. It’s hard, but if you truly love to write then you will find a way. Also, much of the poetry today is shit. People are letting the art form die, so I think there is great responsibility in trying to keep it alive.
What is the most difficult part of writing a line?
The most difficult part is just getting started. Most of the time, I have little thoughts and I will write them down as a line and then go back later and take five random lines written at different times and piece them together cohesively to make the bones of a poem; sort of like a puzzle. Personally, I think this makes writing much easier.
What do you want to communicate to people who read your words?
All I ever want to communicate with a reader is my own truest self. I don’t write for other people. I write for me, and to them. And if they can see the truth within me, then hopefully they’ll be comfortable in trusting my words enough to lean on for themselves.
Is Instagram an important tool for sharing your work?
Instagram is how I got myself known so I’m very grateful that it is here as a tool to spread my word.
What are your future projects?
My poetry collection ”War, Over Easy” is currently available on Amazon and for me, now is very important to promote my book known all over the world. Thinking about the future, I’ll hopefully plan on taking a period off from work and spending four months or so in Europe relaxing and writing my second book. Beyond that, really it’s just continuing to do what I love, which is writing in any form that brings me joy. I’m also writing a screenplay but that’s for another, much longer, much weirder, conversation.
Photos courtesy of the artist