Through the Eyes of a Poet series #7
Through the Eyes of a Poet series by Christina M. Ward
Featured Poet: Elaine Hamilton
Objective: To encourage people to broaden their reading interests through poetry, support the poetry community, and introduce you to poets and their personal stories.
For updates on this series: Join this Author Newsletter.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with a poet that I am familiar with on the Medium platform, and who writes for my personal Medium publication, Fiddleheads & Floss. Elaine Hamilton lives in Seattle, Washington and has been writing poetry for over 10 years. Though, she wasn’t always “open” as a person to the idea of calling herself a poet, poetry has allowed her a way to communicate herself to the world. As she opened up through her poetry, beautiful growth has allowed her to reach deep and inspire others. Poetry really is a way to communicate our hearts to others. She told me a bit about this sentiment and how it has made an impact in her life:
I really didn’t set out to become a writer or poet ( for that matter), It was something that I enjoyed doing, a form of escapism, a way to bring a little magic into my life and let my creativity take hold. Little by little as I became more comfortable, I began letting a side of me show that I often hide in the real world.Elaine Hamilton, on relating to the world through poetry
I decided to let my love of nature, spirituality and my whimsical nature come out to play and this is what happened. Three books later, I guess I can say that I’ve found my niche. I love using words to inspire and to make people think, as well as take them to another place.
On this note, I invite you to read a bit about Elaine’s journey as a poet, the hopes she has for her writing, and her thoughts on the genre. Enjoy this poet’s interview:
Tell me about how you came to be a poet.
I started by doing vision (motivational) boards in high school. I found it easier to write poetry rather than longer, fictional stories. I can often take a photo and write something that matches it, or be inspired by a phrase or word prompt. I’m a “what if” person.
Tell me about one of your poems that is very special to you, and why.
Just one? Lol! That’s a difficult choice. Most of my poetry has a backstory of some sort. I like to see the realness of people, not just a facade or the glitter. One of my favorite poems is “Illusions.” This one has an interesting backstory, as I was inspired by the reflections of water in a water bottle. Just as there are many facets of a diamond, there are many sides to a person, often what we see can be an illusion.
You left me with far too many questions. I don’t know what to believe anymore.
All I have is illusions.
Tell me what is true.
I once believed in you.
I want to know who you really are.
And I don’t want to hold fake diamonds in my hands.
People, places, and things. Memories from long ago.
Turning heads wherever you may be.
City nights. Ruby lights.
Turning your head away from what you don’t want the pretty crowds to see.
Do you remember?
I wonder, do you ever think of me?
Are you happy at the end of the day?
Are you ever lonely when you turn the key?
Hotel rooms and flights.
Luggage lost and silly fights.
First class seats.
That never was my scene.
Do you know who you are inside?
Show me something real.
What is your greatest hope with regards to your poetry?
I simply wish to inspire, even if it is just one heart or one mind. While it would be nice to have an editor or publication notice, it isn’t really necessary.
Does your poetry have a message or a theme that you want to portray to the world?
It doesn’t particularly have a theme. Sometimes I write from deep, raw emotion, other times I write about experiences from my perspective.
How do your poems come to you? And how do you take them from the initial inspiration to the final poem? Tell me about your writing process.
Often the words just form themselves. I can be inspired from people watching, going for a walk or from a photo or prompt. I’ll write a few lines here and there, let it sit for a while, then go back. Sometimes, I get lucky and it will all flow nicely and have a voice. Other times, I need to flesh it out a bit more. I’m notorious for struggling on the last few lines, trying to make it have an impact or even the final word so that it will have a meaningful ending.
One last question, what would you say to readers who do not normally read poetry to encourage them to read the genre?
Poetry can be difficult to get through, to grasp the meaning, but if you look deep inside the words, that is where the true gems lie. It is the heart and soul of a writer. We are sharing deep emotion, and that’s the best way to get to know us. We are passionate creatures, and we let a side of us show in everything we create.
One of Elaine’s poems that particularly stands out to me is one that she wrote in response to a Fiddleheads & Floss POMprompt (which is an F&F sponsored prompt series on Medium). It is called The Writer and gives us a beautiful glimpse into Elaine’s heart as a writer and what the process feels like to her. Here is an excerpt from that poem:
She sits, looking out upon a field of green.
Seeing things, that often through the naked eye, remains unseen.
A writer, a poet, a dreamer of dreams.
Someone who knows that all is not exactly as it seems.
There is another world out there, one that often calls her.
To feel, to live, to breath, and it enthralls her.
Continue reading The Writer
Many thanks to Elaine for sharing a bit of her work with Fiddleheads & Floss followers–we love to be inspired!
Elaine’s contact /website information:
Thank you for reading about this featured poet. I invite you to include poetry in your reading and give this genre a chance to enrich your life. I will be featuring poets on my blog (Author Website), in my newsletter (Author Newsletter), and on my Medium platform (Fiddleheads & Floss Poetry). I welcome you to read about these poets, support them, and perhaps find a poet that brings something very meaningful to your life.