In preparation for the Cut The Crap Poetry evening, I:M sits down with the poets and performers. With honesty the core theme for the event, we look to hear some truths from the artists and to also celebrate the beginning of the new poetry section of the magazine. The event is fast approaching, on October 17th - only 2 days away! Here we talk to one of the poets on the line up, Lily-May Brimson.
1. What is your name and what do you do/study?
I am Lily-May Brimson and I have recently graduated from Bath Spa University with a degree in English Literature. I am off to New Zealand in January for a few months to travel. In the mean time, I am putting together a poetry series and drinking too much beer.
2. When and why did you start writing poetry?
I have always had a love for Shakespeare’s sonnets which I read a lot when I was younger. The Romantics and their love for sublimity and nature has always influenced my poetry. However, since then I founded Spoken Word artists like Kate Tempest with a hip-hop style it really intrigued me. Poetry for me is one of the rawest and purest forms of expression I feel I can access. Poetry can open new perspectives into different worlds creating a perfect platform to explore the chaotic and beautiful thing we call the human experience. It is also a material form of progression for me, each poem is a new emotion and chapter to my life. I sound so profound but it is a medium that has helped me through the roller-coaster that is my mental health.
3. Have you ever performed your poetry before?
I have previously spoken at a few open-mic events with Raise The Bar Poetry but I still feel my confidence and voice is building each time I speak. It really is eye-opening going to lots of different open-mic nights and listening to all sorts of writing, so I am trying to perform more.
4. Who are your main inspirations in the poetry world and elsewhere?
During my second year at Bath Spa University I attended a Creative Writing lecture about Spoken Word and a beautiful and local poet, Rebecca Tantony, read aloud to us and made the whole lecture fall silent. She rapped to us, read to us and captured us with her own words. I own all her books now and she is one of my biggest inspirations. Kate Tempest holds her heart in my hands with her poetry which is so raw and truthful to the realities of modern society and all of it’s dark corners. She can speak to everyone from all races, cultures and classes. More or less people inspire me, their actions their reactions never cease to amaze me.
5. What does ‘cut the crap’ mean to you? What truth are you trying to tell through your art?
I am trying to make people realise the beauty in simplicity. We are all so caught up in ourselves through the materialism of relationships, stress, money, and identity leaving us hooked in the boundaries of society. We are constantly told what to do, what to feel, what to be when really, we should cling on to the innocence of life and enjoy the smaller things that are presented to us every day. If you’re feeling anxious, treat yourself to a warm bath and twenty cigarettes. If you feel happy, enjoy every second of it. You do you.
6. And finally, can you tell us a story of a time you lied and either got caught, or would like to fess up?
I guess I do have one thing to ‘fess up’. I once told a traveller I met in Berlin that I was an MC for a while (as a complete joke obviously…) and went along with it for much longer than intended. I took it too far and it ended up with me pretending to rap after about ten beers outside of an offy in Berlin. I regret nothing and admittedly loved every second.