Monday, 16 April 2012

Joseph Lisowski

HOW NOT TO CULTIVATE A GARDEN (bad metaphors for a 16 year old)

Twelve stones to form a border
The first one is stubbornness
The second, a sense of privilege
An entitlement to laziness next
Then comes wonder
Followed by daydreaming
Ambition dozes
The world is elsewhere
Work is for another time
Insult intrudes
Anger results
Weeds rule.


TSTmpj:  The title of the poem sets up the context necessary to interestingly sustain it.  How much time do you take over titles?  Do they usually come to you before the poem, or vice versa?

Joseph Lisowski:  This title is kind of a salutation to my son (16 at the time) who writes some terrific poems himself. He was away at school when I wrote this and sent it to him. Titles to my poems usually come after I've written/revised the poem.  I do take time, hopefully, to find the center of the poem, and wait for an appropriate title.  Sometimes, I take a line of part thereof from the poem, adding a twist.


TSTmpj:  As an educator, how often do you see "weeds" ruling at sixteen transmogrify into a beautiful garden.  How do you personally see the beauty intrinsic in a weed?

Joseph Lisowski:  Short answer:  Weeds rule!  (Take a look at erbacce-press website -- -- which celebrates the proliferation of weeds).  As an educator I find it very important to listen to what my young students are saying/writing.  In most cases, I like to think, my nodding silence encourages them to listen to comments of their peers and gain confidence in their writing abilities.

When weeds flowers, what beauty!


TSTmpj:  I had a dream about my schooldays last night, and I've woken to find your poem in my journal's in-box.  Do you believe in synchronicity?  Does it ever enter the sphere of your poetry writing?

Joseph Lisowski:  Isn't it wonderful that we dream, remember, and listen?  Yes.  I believe in synchronicity.  In fact, I'll take it a bit further:  I know that we are all intimately connected with each other.

Bio Note

Joseph Lisowski's most recent poetry chapbook is STASHU KAPINSKI LOOKS FOR LOVE published by erbacce-press (Liverpool, UK).

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