Write while there is still a chance. New Zealand poet is convinced that the book will not win social networks

By Ulyanovsk Unesco City of Literature | Posted: Monday June 22, 2020

The 19th International Forum of Young Writers of Russia, the CIS Countries and Abroad has opened in Ulyanovsk. One of the guests of the forum was the poet from New Zealand, David Howard (David Howard). A middle-aged man with perfect English is unusually polite and tactful - its hard to believe that we are the owner of ten international poetry awards and the author of nine soulful poetry collections, the first of which was published back in 1984.

His last book is called Those Who Keep Silence. It has not been translated into Russian, and it is unlikely to be translated: careless and light, like pebbles on a beach, the words add up in weightless sentences, one extra sound - and the mystic will disappear. Critics often point out that Howard writes not poetry, but portraits of people, places in poetry; that it creates a deep atmosphere and texture, avoiding any congestion and complexity. In the XX century, it was not modern - in the world of the ornate postmodern, its simple lines were sinking, but the XXI century comes into its own, returning the reader’s love to the present.

We talked about this and much more. They say that New Zealand English is very different from American - is that why David Howard avoided the word Modern (modern), replacing it with the book Contemporary?

- David, the poets and writers who gathered this international forum really have to create in another world - in a world without books and thick literary magazines? Facebook already won?

- No, Facebook has not won and will never win. What, in essence, is Social Media (news feeds of social networks. - Approx. Aut.)? This is a moment that eludes the author and the reader. There are no big authors on Facebook - as soon as you create something important, it immediately moves around the endless news feed. You can’t go back, you can’t re-read, you can’t catch. On the other hand, a book is in some way eternity, immortality. I can contact her at any time. Art cannot live as a hostage of news feeds, sooner or later all the present is on paper. Authors grow and rise above themselves, sooner or later getting into paper collections, in publishing houses.

- Do you think that switching from social networks to paper is growth? But on social networks, millions read authors, and circulation of collections of 300, 400 copies ...

- Yes, this is growth. Millions will read today, and tomorrow they will forget. But those three hundred people will have poetry forever, they will re-read them, they will become part of their life, and not the news feed. We need to strive for this.

- To strive is how? Expect publishers to pay attention?

- There is no universal mechanism. We in New Zealand publish collections of young authors, I act as an editor. There are very worthy young people who really have to do tomorrow's literature. Unfortunately, most of the guys are English speakers; contemporary Russian literature, for example, is hardly translated.

“At what point did everything stop?”

“We know Mandelstam, Akhmatova, but after Bulgakov there is silence, and there is nothing.” I admit with shame that I do not know modern Russian literature. Not because she is bad. They simply do not translate it.

- What is the view of Russian culture from New Zealand?

- unusually lively, emotional. This is not the Russia that we see on television - dry, unemotional Brezhnev or Andropov - this is not all. There is great music and a great word. We need to get acquainted and communicate in order to see this in each other.

Article Google Translated from: https://ulpravda.ru/rubrics/cilture/pisat-poka-esch-est-shans-novozelandskii-poet-ubezhden-chto-kniga-ne-pobedit-sotsseti

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