Interview With Kit McCallum
by John aka Sven
Sven: When did you begin to write your poetry?
Kit: I have been writing ever since I can remember. The oldest poem that
I had preserved from my youth, went something like this:
In the room in the back of a little red house, Shone a light through the window, only
heard was a mouse. And yet a small girl, at the age of 10, Wondered why she was born ...
what is life ...does it end?
I guess you could say I've been penning poems and questioning life for almost 30 years
(ouch). I find it's the one true constant in my life, and something I've always enjoyed. I
scribbled little poems on all sorts of scraps of paper (losing many I'm sure), until my
parents gave me the best Christmas gift of all time. They called it a "Nothing
It was a soft cover book that contained blank pages for drawing, and endless lined pages
for writing. On the front cover, it listed "Ideas & Insights", "Dreams
& Revelations", "Fantasies", "Great Truths, Realistic Data, Heavy
Thinking", "Silly Doodles", "& Other Terrific Stuff". In the
upper corner were the words "Write Your Own Book". Well, needless to say write I
did. I still have that worn, dog-eared, raggedy, old book beside me, now "copyright
1977." It was followed rather quickly by a second, larger "Nothing Book"
(this time hard cover), where my scribbles continued for years.
Sven: Where do you find inspiration for your work?
Kit: If I look back to my "Nothing Books," nothing has changed.
On the inside cover of my second book, in 1978, I wrote in big, bold, young, teenage flair
"How I've Kept My Sanity." It's still true to this day! Writing has regularly
been a form of therapy for me. I've often joked that although my father is a psychiatrist,
I've spent more time pouring out my heart to my "pen" than anyone or anything
I find I am drawn to write poetry when I'm either extremely "up" or extremely
"down". I've been told I "wear my heart on my sleeve" and I guess
there's some truth to that. A lot of my poems are simply an exploration of feelings. There
are the times when I write simply to give thanks for all that I have and want to shout it
to the world or on the flip side, I write to question anything and everything in life,
looking for the answers that seem to constantly elude me.
Often I'll write simply to let people know how I feel about them from family, to friends,
to co-workers, and increasingly often, to the wonderful poets here at Passions. My biggest
inspiration by far, is my mother. Many a poem in my family section of my web site reflects
my love and adoration for both my father and mother. I truly believe that when you
"feel it," "say it."
Sven: Would you tell us some details about yourself.
Kit: I've been happily married for almost 20 years, have a wonderful
family and extended family who inspire me daily. I was not fortunate to have children of
my own, so my family and myriad of pets have been my little world. The loss of my
12-year-old German Shepherd sent me in a tailspin last year, and many poems ensued from
that sorrowful experience.
Sven: How did you come upon Passions and do you feel that there's less or
more interest in poetry as a literary form these days?
I found Passions shortly after it began. I read a magazine article that said poetry was a
"dying art". It was a horrible article and talked very "lowly" of
poets of any kind. I'd been writing since I could remember, and here this silly person was
telling me I was a dinosaur! I was so disappointed, and to be honest, extremely angry with
the writer. I set out to search the Internet to see if I was some lost soul holding onto
something that no one cared about anymore.
I found a few sites, but nothing that caught my eye until Passions in Poetry. I submitted
five poems to the main site in March 1999. I loved the "prequels" Ron added to
each of them. I couldn't imagine anyone being able to take the time he must have, to read
and summarize each one with such incredible words and care. He had me hooked right then
Then I began to receive such wonderful e-mails from people all over, saying how they
related or were touched by various poems I'd submitted to Passions. Each one would make my
day. I found myself responding and saving each and every one. I think the greatest joy I
receive is hearing that someone picked up the phone, and called their father, mother or
friend after reading one of them. One gentleman once asked me if he could use my
"Dad" poem as the centerpiece for a collage he was creating for his mother,
after the passing of his father. I could think of no greater honor. Many others have
written to me about mother/daughter relationships, friendships, and dealing with life and
crisis. I continue to receive comments almost weekly, and each and every one is a treasure
I hold so dear.
That takes me to the Passion's forums. I was far too shy to join initially, just happy to
sit on the sidelines and watch from a distance. I'm glad I came out of hiding though, as
every day feels like Christmas when I read even one heartfelt response from one reader to
another, from one poet to another. This is a lovely "home", and has such a safe
and compassionate feel. It's my newest addiction I fear.
Now I'm thankful to the ignorant writer of the initial article that said, "poetry was
a dying art", for he didn't know poetry is clearly alive and well, and it's dwelling
here at Passions!
To read more from Kit McCallum go to this page: http://netpoets.com/poems/authors/0406000.htm
Passions in Poetry
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