16---> samantha & cervera


Nom: Samantha Barendson

Ville natale: Vilanova i la Geltrú (Espagne)

Ville actuelle: Lyon (France)

Travail: Poète

Âge: 39

*Qu'est-ce que signifie pour vous la poésie?

Pour celui qui lit, c'est avant tout un fourmillement dans l'estomac. La poésie touche les tripes,  bouleverse, émeut, fait jouir. Ensuite, pour celui qui écrit, c'est une façon de dire le monde, de le peindre, de rendre accessibles et universelles des visions et des captations de ce monde. (1)

*Poète préféré/ poème préféré:

Alfons Cervera (non disponible en français ou en anglais)

Difficile de faire un choix, il y a tant de poètes vivants de talent (Jean-Marc Flahaut, Thierry Roquet, Melchior Liboà,Claire Rengade, Natyot, Efe Duyan, Fernando de Leonardis, etc.) et tant de poètes fondateurs (William Blake, Federico García Lorca, René Char, etc.)

Exemple d'un poème de Thierry Roquet (in “9 petites choses sans importance”):

parfois tu ronfles fort

parfois tu parles dans ton sommeil

parfois tu cherches ta respiration

parfois tu te crispes de peur

dehors des papiers volent au vent

sous la pâle lumière d'un réverbère


*Pourquoi aimez-vous ce poète/ ce poème?

J'aime ce poème car il comporte tout ce que j'aime dans un poème: rythme, répétitions, quotidien, ambiance, corps, ouverture sur un autre espace, suspension. (3)


* The above questions are hopeful French equivalents to those conceived of and asked in English. They are in order: What does poetry mean to you?, Favorite poet/favorite poem?, and Why do you like this poet/poem?

Below are “sketch” translations of Samantha’s responses.

(1) For someone who reads, it is first and foremost a tingling in the stomach. Poetry touches the guts, overwhelms, moves, gives euphoria. Then, for someone who writes, it is a way to speak of the world, to paint, to make accessible and universal visions and recordings of this world. 

(2) Alfons Cervera (not available in French or English)

Difficult to make a choice, there is so much talent among the living poets (Jean-Marc Flahaut, Thierry Roquet, Melchior Liboa, Claire Rengade, Natyot, Efe Duyan, Fernando de Leonardis, etc.) and as founding poets (William Blake Federico García Lorca, René Char, etc.).

Example of a poem by Thierry Roquet (in “9 small unimportant things”):

sometimes you snore loudly

sometimes you talk in your sleep

sometimes you search for breath

sometimes you are clenched in fear

outside papers blow in the wind

under the pale light of a street lamp


I like this poem because it has everything I love in a poem: rhythm, repetition, an everyday mood, body, an opening to another space, suspension.

15---> kelly & the three way tie


Name: Kelly Jones 

Hometown: Raleigh, NC 

Current Cities: Raleigh, NC, and New Orleans, LA

Occupation: Bartender/Editor/Educator/Event Organizer/Writer

Age: 30

What does poetry mean to you?

Poetry, at its best, is the thing that everyone’s wanted to say but couldn’t figure out how to. Its calculated expression and unbridled thought; poems question the world and attack it from another angle. They make us think and feel and wonder and dream and hope and cry and smile and remember. Sometimes it means rhyme, meter, form, structure, etc., but I prefer to appreciate poems more for their content than their presentation.  As someone who writes poems, poetry also means creation, frustration, and revision. It means treasuring a thing that, when you boil it down, is just words and white space.

Favorite Poet/Poem:  

I don’t have a favorite poet, but I’ve got a three way tie going for favorite poem. Please, read them. I promise that you might like them.

Dream Song 4″ by John Berryman

For Saundra” by Nikki Giovanni

Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note” by Amiri Baraka  

Why do you like these poems?

“Dream Song 4” draws me in because of Mr. Bones and Henry’s conversation. The way they speak with each other and describe their world is captivating. And the way Berryman turns a phrase is so lovely and memorable.

“For Saundra” is hard and honest and questioning the world. It shows a smart woman who is tough and ready for revolution. When I first read that poem in middle or high school that was an unfamiliar character that I was excited to finally see.

“Preface…” is heart wrenching and I love it for that. It also does a damn good job of using an isolated line to make an impact.