SEVERN — Poet Rolland “Moose” Amos of Severn has published several books of poetry, and has more in the works.
His books contain poems of various lengths, some letters to editors on topical subjects, and some brief book reviews of books that he said he greatly enjoyed and thought merit some plugging. His books are listed on Amazon.com.
How long have you been writing and how did you get started?
I wrote my first poem in 2013 (“A Ditty to AHS”), another (“Let the Good Times Roll”) for a wedding anniversary a year later, after which I started writing poems regularly.
At the suggestion of a friend I contacted Dorrance Publishers in 2019 and that led to the publishing of my first first book – “JUNK POETRY.” Since then they have published two more books of poetry – “JUNK POETRY II” and “JUNK POETRY III.”
What inspires you to write?
I enjoy the process and the challenge. At my age (now 89) I think I have a few things I’d like to say and poetry is one way to do it. I have also in my last two books included letters to editors and brief book reports of books that I deem worthy of promoting.
Do you consider writing to be a career?
Negative. It’s basically a hobby. I feel sorry for anyone who hopes to make money writing poetry – or anything, actually.
What kind of writing process do you use?
Well, I’ve read a lot by poets who describe their writing – poetry and otherwise. First, you should have something on your mind that you want to express. At my age, I do. If it looks like something I can express briefly – in a poem – I try to formulate the first two lines. If I can do that, I have the form determined and something to build on. One writer said a good beginning and a good ending are essential. I try to keep that in mind. I prefer poems with rhyming lines (Robert Frost said that any other kind of poetry – i.e. prose – is like playing tennis without a net, in other words, not very interesting or challenging). He also said, however, that some subjects do not lend themselves to rhyming – so, we poets have options. I’d also like to add that I make frequent use of the computer (an option not available to poets of old – which makes their efforts even more commendable) to find synonyms, antonyms, or, just suitable words with suitable syllables. Using the computer I consider legal cheating in poetry writing today.
How did you publish your book?
I contacted Dorrance and we reached a quick agreement. I write and they publish.
Who are some of your favorite authors and why? How much do you feel they influence your own writing?
Well, I’m looking for poets that use rhyme. So, I really like Robert Louis Stevenson, Ogden Nash, Robert Service and Roald Dahl. Their stuff is great. I wouldn’t say they or their styles influenced me, but they have shown me what can be done in poetry form – lots!
What are you working on now?
I’ll have enough stuff ready for another book “JUNK POETRY IV,” in 2022.
What do you want readers to know about you?
Not much – just that I’m old and was endowed with great curiosity – two qualities that are important for one who wants to write poetry. The older you are, the greater the chance that you might have something to say. After that, it would also help if you had some writing experience. Not everyone does.
Please include an excerpt from the book that you feel is compelling for local readers.
Well, I like Ogden Nash – so, occasionally I’ll come up with a brief poem that shows I have a sense of humor, like:
So sad to see rotting, what once liked to play -
Rabbits, cats, squirrels, beasts of prey -
Spread out dead, there in the roadway,
Flat, glistening, like a juicy filet.
Toilets are exotic things!
Even if they show some rings.
All that crap, where did it go,
Before toilets we came to know?
Today, amazingly, turds swirl,
Twist, turn, then in a whirl,
Will disappear! Who knows where?
Toilets know, so we don’t care.
Some guys avoid stressful lives,
Snot-nosed kids and nagging wives.
Somehow they end up single,
In serener circles mingle.