Today we talk about State Of The Life: The Past Within, a book by Tmbrr(Sì)i published with our publishing house Europe Books.
Europe Books had the pleasure of interviewing the author, Tmbrr(Sì)i, to get to know her better, the crucial themes of her book of poetry State Of The Life: The Past Within, as well as how she defines her writing style.
Below you can find our interview. Take a seat and enjoy your reading!!!
- What are the crucial themes of this book of poetry?
This is a question the response to which I am going to have to admit no knowledge. And that, unfortunately, also goes for writing style. It is understood that some anthologies are grouped according to theme. Some poets actually write that way; thematically. When I am in the grip of that which forces the experience of life out through my fingers, I do not think. I do not wonder what theme has been covered or what is next. To say what themes are crucial implies that some of what has been written is otherwise. This cannot be true. When writing “The judge of our misdeeds is one”, the exercise of squeezing feeling into words was as serious an endeavour as it was when writing about the season in which the loved one is missed. Even a piece such as “If I were a tree” or “Pussy Cat” may seem playful on the surface, but they request attention to be drawn to issues such as the felling of trees and its consequences as well as the need not to paint populations with one brush. Granted, a single poem can be about one thing. A single line can hold an idea that is found elsewhere. But poetry has been said to hold different significance for individuals. Happiness for instance, is there, even when a dream lost or hoped for. Some will see it, others will not. There is really no such thing as every interpretation being correct because some are too extreme to make sense within the context of the piece(s) in question. Yet it does not nullify the power of readers to identify for themselves what jumps out at them, what stays with them after a reading, which parts speak to them loudest. Each word should be there – beam, cornerstone or vent. Each idea renders every poem a whole, making them all crucial, which is unacceptable academically, but thankfully this is not understood to be an academic exercise. All I know is that I write those parts of life which I have the capacity or too little strength not to represent on the page.
- What do you want to communicate to readers with this work?
What do you want to communicate to your readers? To those who would turn the cover to see more than the title, the message is that life is like a snowglobe. A huge dynamic snowglobe. What they hold in their hands, what they listen to or look at is real. Flecks may be viewed differently, different pairs of eyes will track different parts of the whole, but it is a real whole. The challenge with inspiration is that it may veer away from exact events, but retains its role as the buttress. The poet has never provided a kite with lessons. There has, however, been a striking encounter with an individual who was convinced that they has all the requisite knowledge of life and more. This was a painful encounter in which someone who could obviously have been so much better performed below average in certain aspects of life because they were superior to advice from certain sources. So when reading, hear the beauty of the music but remember that some of the notes are warning calls. Heed them. Some call attention to other things. Listen out for them. Many clichés are used. Be careful not to lose significance thinking you know what is being said. That is one great way to miss out on the best in life; thinking you know.
- How would you define your writing style?
It is not certain what word or phrase may be used. The poet is certain only about parts of challenges, which leaves them without answers. Often the poet is confused. The poet feels fear. Sometimes in the poet’s head, a certain piece will read in a particular way. Some phrases are fast. Sometimes the emotion comes out that way. Some words which readers may feel to be misfits are specifically chosen because of what they mean, how meaningful they can be, or what they could mean. Interestingly the poet strives to be clear. Granted, that clarity is not always obvious. Sometimes it is unnoticeable because of being too obvious. Some aspects which appear strange are that way because the poet is placing reading aids. When a statement reads like a question it may be because it is so obvious that putting a question mark is felt to subtract from the rhetorical value. And so the reader may see a full stop – if they look. The mind may trick us into seeing the question mark we believe should be there, or we see the period and dismiss it as a typographical error. Part of the meaning slips away. Perhaps the writing style in this particular work could be described as attempted deliberate delivery with unrestrained exhibition of vulnerability. The poet is not just playing the victim. They are baring all. You cannot say, “This is how life has been” then redact significant parts of it and hope for understanding.
- How did it feel to see your book published?
To see the publishing of the work is amazing. It is indescribable. It is also extremely humbling. A number of the marks made on me by the sands of time have been collected in one tome, and that process is critical insofar as it has become a starting point without which there would not be a work to speak of. However, without the team that is putting so much into the actual collection of the ideas, sentiments, tears and torn bits into something that can be handed over to humanity to examine, it would be an inquisitive child who would stumble across faded pages in a trunk somewhere, never published, never read beyond the walls of the poet’s home. One can become accustomed (with whatever difficulty) to walking down the street unseen. Who are they? The prospect of walking down the street as that weather beaten survivor and being pointed out as “the one who wrote that collection “takes much more to get used to, and it might not happen. That is how monumental it is not only to be published, but to face publication by such a great house. You can pinch yourself, but even when it hurts you are not sure you felt it. It is indescribable.
- Are you already working on a new project?
I have never had the opportunity to work on a project; time and opportunity have worked on me. Perhaps more of time, because until recently there was no opportunity. I had asked around and always found that my work could not be published. My ammunition comes in the form of family that believe in the poet, so they kept pushing. Then one day, I came across Europe Books online, and sent an enquiry to which I received what appeared to be the usual response. Only when I sent a manuscript, it was so well received as to be interestingly shocking. And here we are. At last given the opportunity for publication, it is necessary to state that this was never about presenting the self to the world as a poet. It was about handing the world the work. And more than that, it was about asking the world to look. Not as a dancer invites the world to look, but as a child presents a wound to a parent or guardian. It was about request that those who see assist, if only by acknowledging that while it is possible to live a fairytale, it is also quite possible to live a nightmare, and inexplicably heinous that the nightmare should be completely unnecessary whatever form it takes. Inspiration has been visiting regularly. If it is deemed acceptable to publish what comes next, then it shall be published. There is, however, a bit of an injustice in asking an injured child if they plan to get hurt again. Especially while the wound is yet fresh.
Europe Books thanks the author, Tmbrr(Sì)i, once again for taking the time and answering our questions. We are really pleased to have walked alongside her on the editorial path that led to the publication of her book State Of The Life: The Past Within. We wish her the best of luck for her future works.
To you, my readers, I leave you with some of the author’s strong messages she wants to convey: “So when reading, hear the beauty of the music but remember that some of the notes are warning calls. Heed them. Some call attention to other things. Listen out for them”.
So, my dear reader, all I have to say is to enjoy your reading!