The Quietus | Features | Tome On The Range | Things Come As They Will: A Q&A With John Burnside

As for separating out the forms, I have to say that things come as they will – ideas, images, rhythms. I compose poetry ‘on the lips’ (or to put it less lyrically, in my head) then write the lines down when they have formed (though not before). Prose, I get ideas while on the move, but I have to jot down notes, scribbles, impatient doodles, maps – just to try things out before I am ready to start writing. This means that I draft prose stuff on paper, but not poetry. So what separates the two mostly is the method. In prose, I’d say the ideas that interest me get tangled up with  ..

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