National Poetry Month Interview Series: Interview with Poet Mark J. Mitchell

Each day in April, in honor of National Poetry Month and our third anniversary issue (find out how to get a copy HERE), we are running an interview with a poet who has been published in Gyroscope Review. Read on.

National Poetry Month Interview Series: Interview with Poet Mark J. Mitchell

Poet Mark J. Mitchell

How will you celebrate National Poetry Month? Reading a poem a day. Passing out poems for National Poem in Your Pocket Day (one of my favorite holidays), editing and rewriting my daily poems written during Lent (a practice of mine for 30 years).

Pen, pencil or computer first? Pen first. Then computer. Twice.

Who/what are your influences? Medieval poetry—Middle English, French, Italian. Modern French, Spanish and Italian Poetry (Aragon, Machado, Pasolini). George Hitchcock, Hart Crane, Philip Levine, Elizabeth Bishop. Browning and Hopkins from the Victorians.

What topic is the hardest for you to write about and why? Politics, although I do, because it is transitory in a way other things aren’t.

What was the worst writing idea you ever had? Writing a thriller with a case of beer as the Maguffin. Writing a thriller at all.

What authors do you love right now? Weldon Kees. Italo Calvino. Olena Kalytiak Davis.

What is the most important role of poets in 2018? Two-fold: Canary in the coal mine and imbuing daily life with the mythology it deserves.

Where do you go when you need to recharge? My meditation cushions.

What is your favorite end-of-the-day drink? Sparkling water and cranberry juice.

Mark J. Mitchell lives in San Francisco. His most recent publications are “Guardians of the Secret” in Third Wednesday and his novel The Magic War from Loose Leaves Publishing. Find out more about him on his Facebook page,  Mark J. Mitchell, Writer.