Curiosity Drives My Poetry

Damian White Author Interview

I Made A Place For You is a collection of poetry that explores spirituality, religion, perseverance, and humility and strives for a higher order statement. What inspires you to write poetry?

I’m inspired by questions that linger, moments of awe, and life’s seemingly endless idiosyncrasies. Curiosity drives my poetry, and I find my notebook to be a safe space for never needing to table a wayward thought.

It’s the process of threading the needle between words to weave together even the most distant ideas that brings me solace when writing. I continue to crave the unique thrill of teasing out the essence of an experience or memory, which I have only ever found in poetry.

My favorite poem from this collection is ‘We Locked Eyes’. Do you have a poem that stands out to you from this collection?

Ironically, “We Locked Eyes” is also my favorite poem in the collection! I wrote that poem in the evening, and tears stained my notebook pages as I finished that night. I actually spent years avoiding mirrors and being dissatisfied with myself, so this poem was my catharsis. The first stanza of “We Locked Eyes” is what made me decide to write the rest of I Made A Place For You.

I felt like a “burial ground of missteps” with nothing but “dormant desires.” I cherish this opportunity to share pieces of myself with people who are looking for ways to heal inside. I say, “When life gives you lemons, make progress,” because being stagnant is an all-too-familiar feeling that I left in the past.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in your poetry?

Personal healing, my off-and-on relationship with religion, and nature’s mysteries are the most prevalent themes in my writing. The title “I Made A Place For You” originated with the idea that I carved out a safe space for myself to irrigate my spirituality and explore topics that aren’t great brunch table talk. Who talks about “purgatory” over waffles and mimosas?

I love to write, and I never force myself to work on poetry. If I see a breathtaking art piece or wake up in a fit of inspiration, I may jot down a line or two; however, there’s usually a special feeling in my gut when I sit down intent on writing a full piece.

The art in the book is fantastic. What was the art collaboration process like with illustrator Francesco Orazzini?

Francesco and I work well together because we both respect the artistic process. From the outset, we gave each other space to iterate on ideas, share criticism, and lean on our expertise. Francesco started each illustration with a pencil outline before finishing in watercolor. I knew the first time he sent me a sketch that he was a true artist. Most illustrators would have sent a digital mockup, but I saw Francesco’s dedication to this book in his hand-drawn sketches.

I love how the symmetry between the poems and illustrations adds a deeper visual element to the pages. My eyes feel the tug-of-war between word and image, and both are deceptively persuasive. It’s truly the book I’ve always wanted to read, and Francesco’s visionary creativity brought my poetry to life. We are already discussing ways to make our next book even more compelling.

Author Links: GoodReads | Amazon

What if I told you the golden rule of speech is to speak when spoken through?

This poetry collection explores a number of themes, ranging from spirituality and religion to perseverance and humility. The poems in Damian White’s debut book dwell less in the realm of imagistic and narrative impulses and more so strive for “higher order statement.”

In I Made A Place For You, we experience the turmoil unearthed from daring to make a place for our inmost curiosities.

About Literary Titan

The Literary Titan is an organization of professional editors, writers, and professors that have a passion for the written word. We review fiction and non-fiction books in many different genres, as well as conduct author interviews, and recognize talented authors with our Literary Book Award. We are privileged to work with so many creative authors around the globe.

Posted on December 16, 2022, in Interviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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