We talk about a whole bunch of things; the publication of Bone Ink , poetry, ghosts, writing about boys, fire and ash. There’s an extract below, but head over to the Glasgow Review of Books for the complete interview.
Extract from interview:
CA: The Carson quote is quite apt actually as there’s a lot of fire and ash and embers in Bone Ink in various manifestations. Can you tell me a bit about how you came to put the collection together, was it something that evolved organically or did you write with particular intent/themes in mind? For me the recurring/linked ideas were made of concrete, water and fire and there are really strong senses of skin on bodies and all that is human, both natural and man-made.
RC: It evolved really organically, all my work comes from a pool of material — fragments, parts of poems, images, snippets of narrative — that I just allow to float around until pieces start to come together. Once I get a clump of related ideas I start to focus the writing, this is where I start writing with more intent, it’s where I start to see if this clump will become a parcel of loosely related poems, a single poem, or a tightly connected series of pieces. In the collection you’ll find poems that could almost run together, especially the poems set in Western Sydney, for me they’re all a part of some larger story that I only see pieces of, it’s like some unruly, epic, endless and constantly shifting film that I’m able (occasionally) to transcribe scenes from. All that skin and blood and concrete and cigarette smoke is just the stuff that stays with me, the stuff we live with and around. I like the stuff we feel with, I like the stuff that makes us feel even if it’s as hard as concrete, I like the stuff you have to work to leave a mark in. And I don’t have much interest in writing about the things that don’t stay with me; as a poet I don’t get out of bed unless there’s blood on the dance floor.