Thursday, June 9, 2016

Poetry Spotlight: Noor Shirazie

Hello Poetteers,

In this series I'd like to highlight my favorite poets. I had the honor of getting in touch with Noor Shirazie and interviewing her for you today. Noor Shirazie is a 24 year old creativity enthusiast and author of 'Mourning Departures'. 

When and how did you get introduced to poetry? 

I was introduced to poetry through some of my earliest English classes but was more intrigued by my mom's poetry. She's been writing for decades. I was really impressed and blown away by her pieces upon first reading them. She also motivated me because she showed that it's possible to pursue a passion without pursuing it as a career. It was a very important lesson at a time when I was still figuring out which career path to opt for. In my culture, writing isn't the most reputable career, so for her to write passionately, it encouraged me to give it a try as well without worrying about societal or cultural limitations.

What is your inspiration behind your poems?

There are definitely a handful of people who come to mind, people who have both hurt and helped me over the years. They've fueled a lot of my pieces. That being said, the platform I post on more frequently [Tumblr] is also filled with inspiration due to its large pool of writers. By interacting with writers who can magically put unexpected metaphors and imagery together, it opens my eyes to the possibilities contained within poetry.

A poem is a story that many people can relate to. Because of this, I also began receiving poetry prompts from those who view my blog. They tell me of their stories, their challenges, and their experiences. I then write based on those scenarios. The scenarios are often such that many people can relate to them. It's a really rewarding feeling to write with the intention to heal.

What keeps you going back to poetry?

Since I began writing, it's never failed me. It's an outlet through which I can sort through my own thoughts. Before getting upset over something, writing allows me to talk to myself. If I were looking for words of encouragement, what would someone tell me? Poetry is almost like an out-of-body experience that way. I become a stronger version of myself through the words until I can become a stronger person. It's the ultimate form of catharsis. The poems are almost saying, "Here are a few words to help you get by while you heal at your own pace."

Another reason I'm drawn to poetry is the knowledge that it's inspiring others and helping others overcome whatever causes them to relate to the pieces. On a more technical level, it's fun to challenge myself and see which words can explain a specific situation. What if I pair these words together? What sounds most powerful? The sheer experimentation of it keeps it interesting.

Do you write in one sitting or over a span of days?

I know a lot of writers that take their time and form beautiful pieces, but personally, I prefer to write in one sitting. If I write over a span of a few days, the thoughts grow stale, and the words become less concise. My poems tend to be short, so writing in one sitting is usually never difficult. I write in spurts, haha.

Do you read your old poems?

Absolutely, and I encourage all writers to do so. Old poems are almost like a diary. It's interesting to go back in time and see where you were during a specific year or month, how you were feeling, and what you were going through. It's also a wonderful reminder of how much both you and your writing style have evolved.

Who are your favorite poets?

I gravitate toward strong, female poets who cover topics such as identity, love, culture, belonging, healing, and growth. Nayyirah Waheed, Warsan Shire, Emma Bleker, Pavana, Rupi Kaur, Salma Deera, Yasmin, and Ijeoma Umebinyuo have all been favorites for a while now.

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Thank you, Noor, for being on the blog. I am able to relate to what you have to say and I hope the same goes for my readers or they learned something new.

Where to Find Her


stay inspired,
Fida

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