Thursday, May 13, 2010

Daisy Chain Poetry Gang -- Focus on Paige von Lieber (The Dream According to Us)

I've been penning poetry beside Paige for over two years. I think we've gone through THREE April PAD Challenges with Robert Brewer. But she's not just a whiz with words -- she also has a keen eye with a camera and snaps what I term 'photopoems'.

You can read Paige's poem The World According to Us --> HERE. Then, pull up a chair and a icy glass of cyberade, and listen to her talk about making words sing...


Thanks so much Linda, not only for this interview, but also for inviting me to participate in the Daisy Chain, it was my first. I enjoyed the challenges I was faced with, trying to not only figure out what I wanted to write but also what the starter may have had in mind. Of course the direction of every poem can change once it becomes spoken. You know that as a writer, even though we have our agenda and outline of sorts for what we think we want to say, but the words and characters know what they are.

You write poetry and prose - which calls to you more, and why? Poetry. Not to say that I haven’t or don’t ever write prose, it’s just that I seem to have issues with that whole hamburger theory. The top bun, burger patty and bottom bun not to mention with or without onions, cheese, pickles etc. Poetry just seems to happen for me. I mean I see it everywhere, the way the sun can shine just so or how a hawk seems to float and dive through the air. I also blame my childhood, my mother always did art stuff of some sort, any sort and I was better at creating than athletics and I see writing as a form of creation. Or could be because of the whole God syndrome that so many psychologists think humans strive for. I think it is part of our nature to imitate Him, just like children do with parents, you know wearing your mother’s high heels or your Dad’s jacket. Well that and I don’t have to do grammar junk.

How would you characterize your poetry voice? your prose voice? Wishy washy. In that I can’t seem to find a voice, or what feels like a voice to me. It’s all over the place, although sometimes there appears to be a sort of theme, but who knows. I tend to be eclectic in everything, the music I listen to, the types of art I try my hand at and my poetry falls in that category too. I liken myself to a dragonfly, I flitter about between so many things that it appears I’m not doing anything other than flittering about, except I’m really getting full of whatever it is I need at the time. Someone once said that I had style, but they didn’t tell me what kind and they didn’t use the term “voice”. All in all if you really pined me down I suppose I would have to say, an everyday type of voice. You know like everyone has, common and one most folks can understand…an inside voice soft and quiet even soothing; outside voice loud and obnoxious like the squawking mocking birds or that damn wiener dog that pounds and whines all day at the neighbors back door; love and death frequently voice their opinions sometimes in unison. Maybe I should ask, What do you mean by my voice?

What inspired the first lines of this poem? I asked the other poets for a 3 lined stanza in 1st person POV in the present tense, here is the starting stanza

The Dream
according to us

I saw a miniature black horse; its name was Ninety-two
standing before orange elevator doors
they chimed open, Ninety-two winked and leapt inside

The inspiration was a building number that flew past as we drove south on I-45, I only caught a portion of the number, and the song Black Horse, by KT Tunstall, was playing on the radio. I enjoy writhing dream poems and the fact that they can jump from one thing to another and thought it would be a decent enough theme for a group.

When you wrote the first line(s), did you have a preconceived idea of how your poem would shape and form? If yes, what was that vision? No, I had no idea where it would end up or if it would even stay with the black horse image. My main idea was a poem that I hoped would be fun for everyone. Especially since this was my first Daisy Chain experience.

What surprised you about the final version? I wasn’t surprised at how well it sort of fell together, they all are really good poets. With that said, I have rearranged some of the stanzas and changed some a bit… let me explain I have issues with balance and the way things look to the eye (my artistic eye) and felt from an editor point of view for flow they work better in this order. This question makes me uncomfortable, I’m usually a passive sort of person and don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. I would so suck at being a real editor constantly saying “I’m sorry” and junk like that.

What are you working on now? I’m currently editing some of the poems I did during April and the PAD Challenge prompts by Robert of Poetic Asides. I am quite pleased with the way some have turned out. Funny I don’t seem to mind cutting and rearranging my work. I may grumble about some of the prompts, but once I convince my muse, named Genius, which lives under a chair in my studio to get to work she does. You see it’s her fault if a poem is good, bad or indifferent not mine. And that whole concept has opened a freeness for me; No worries, cause I’m not to blame, she is.

Happy weekend, and peace... Linda


  1. Blogger is being picky on pulling up the comment box.

    Thanks again Linda, this was fun for me and I hope the other poets.

  2. it turned out beautiful, nice perspective and insight into your process.

  3. This is really a neat project. Good interview. Nice to see how you all worked together to achieve something very special. Seeing poetry in everything is a lovely gift - revel in it, Paige.

  4. Ahhh, Paige is so sweet, deep and funny. I just love the many facets to her, all pretty amazing to me -- whether in her quiet soft voice or mockingbird squawking. She is all very very GOOD.

    I think Genius under the chair is working overtime, she's putting out some stuff I just go "Wow" and "Ahhh" about. If that is wishy-washy, gimme more of that!! ;)