'Goodbye is too small a word'


Name: Kristen Lang. Height: yet to exceed 5100m (Huayhuash Mts, Peru). Studies: PhD (paid to write poetry for three years in preparation for not being paid to write poetry for the next twelve). Favourite form to write in: free verse – like an archaeological dig that uncovers the odd dirty lump of creativity. On writing haiku: don’t start – it’s a disease. Least favourite form: sestina. Most contentious belief: the world wasn’t made for humans. Food rave: crumblings of dark chocolate on toasted sough dough topped with hot slices of plum and soy yoguart. Some favourite poems: Tredinnick’s ‘Dying, and How to Survive It’, Kinnell’s ‘Pure Balance’, Stevens’ ‘Of Mere Being’, Maccaig’s ‘Rag and Bone’, Transtromer’s ‘Allegro’, Christopher Herold’s ‘this purple flower / at last I / forget its name’, Bill Knot’s ‘Sleep’, Billy Collins’ ‘Velocity’… Animal I’d most like to experience being: octopus. Books: Let me show you a ripple (2008), SkinNotes (Walleah Press 2017), The Weight of Light (FIP 2017). Why we need poetry: degrees of freedom – poetry is a way to shift gears, re-meshing our words in ways we didn’t see coming. Why I need poetry: to know we can step past all the bickering and still be human with each other.