Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Spending Time with Isha Wagner--New Zealand--An Interview

Dear Friends,

It is a pleasure to share Whispers’ first interview with you. Isha Wagner is an accomplished poet from New Zealand who has been contributing her insightful poetry for our online journal since 2013. She has been an international traveler, connecting with others that embrace the gift of words. Her writing conveys cultures, allowing us to travel with her.

Thank you, Isha, for sharing your thoughts for this interview…


Karen--Where are you from?

Isha--I was born in Wellington, the capital of New Zealand.  I am fifth generation New Zealander of Scottish/English heritage.

Karen--How would you describe your life?

Isha--I am a traveler, traveling over the world from a young age. 

Karen--Why do you write?

Isha--Perhaps to express an idea and perhaps, more importantly, to communicate with others...always a deep desire to write in words something one wants to express in the written word.

Karen--How did your interest in poetry begin?

Isha--I recall sitting on a park bench when about seven years old saying to myself--I will be a writer and that stayed in my mind.  So, I began to write little poems, but these were not accepted well so I stopped and decided to wait till I was an adult.  (Editor's thoughts--It is so sad that people can't celebrate and encourage young writers. I hope if anyone knows of a young writer that the Whispers community can celebrate, please email me at karenoleary1956@gmail.com)

Karen--Have you any preferred style of poetry you like to write in?

Isha--I prefer to write freely.  When writing rhymed poetry, it always seems to me to be contrived and somewhat false or pretentious.  And yet I know this is not so in reality, it's simply as I see it.  I just write as I write without--as I see it--without restriction. 

Karen--If you could make a wish and have it come true what would it be?

Isha--This is difficult to answer as each day I have a different wish: I could say there is not one specific wish I wish for.  Today, writing these few words, my wish is to live forever.  And, tomorrow I may wish I had never been born!  Yesterday, I wished for a disease-free world.  As said, one has varied opinions.

Karen--If you had a chance to live your life again, what would you change?

Isha--I would change my thought processes, have a clearer, sharper mind, become all-knowing and probably go into the sciences and study physics.

Karen--What final words would you like to say to the reader?

Isha--Write as if your life depends on it which in a sense it does. Despite little praise or words of encouragement, there is a degree of satisfaction especially when you look back at your earlier work and think did I write that?  There is, after all, much comfort to be derived from putting your thoughts and ideas that spring up spontaneously - into written poetry.  And you will never know how much pleasure and even meaning you can give to others' lives.

Karen—In closing, Isha’s poetry has been celebrated and appreciated at Whispers. She encourages others with her insightful comments for them. We reach out--we cross borders--we grow. I will let Isha’s poem and bio share the rest of this column. Thank you so much, Isha, for this interview. 

Blessings,

Karen O'Leary
Whispers' Editor

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Birthday at Tatum Park

a chilly August windless blue sky day
and the elegantly served afternoon tea
of Earl Grey and English Breakfast
with silver pots and fine bone china
gladden the eyes glazed with cataract
and distracts the minds from rheumatic limbs

later we walk amongst the statues of trees
planted by settlers over a century ago
the camera in my hands awaits to capture
the face of a child of seventy-five this day
pinched, wrinkled, thinning bright white hair

with aloof but thick knowing eyes

lens pointed to immortalise the nostalgia
please, she says gently, don't
I look so different from how I feel

her remark astounds me
I put the camera away and
leave this moment alone

Isha Wagner is a New Zealand poet. She has resided in many countries including Iceland, Libya, India, and Australia. She read some of her work at the VIII International Poetry Festival held in Granada, Nicaragua, in February 2012. She has had three collections of poetry published.

18 comments:

  1. A wonderful interview with Poet, Isha. I appreciate her thoughts on poetry and aspiration for scientific inclination. Phrases like windless sky, statues of trees add poetic metaphors.
    It remind me of interview by Atma Ram in 1992 about the philosophy of my poetry writings.

    Wish you, Karen and your family A Happy and Blissful New Year.

    Pravat

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    1. Dear Pravat,

      It was such a pleasure to interview our talented friend. Isha is insightful, not only in her poetry, but also when she shares comments for others. What a joy to celebrate her!

      Thank you for your kind wishes for me and my family. I wish you the same.

      Blessings,
      Karen

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  2. What a grand surprise this is. Your interview came off so well, I felt I was right there with the both of you. It is good to dig a little deeper into Isha. Paired with "Birthday At Tatum Park" this post is essential reading, as I see it. Thanks, Karen!

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    1. Dear Michael,

      Having Isha the honor of interviewing her was a gift to our poetry family. Michael, you are so right about Isha's poetry. She delves into the essence of humanity for a deeper look. Thank you for stopping by to share your thoughts.

      Blessings,
      Karen

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  3. Karen,
    A wonderful, in-depth look at this poet.
    Sincerely,
    David Fox

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    1. Thank you, David. What a joy that you enjoyed this interview.

      Blessings,
      Karen

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  4. Very interesting to learn some more about you, Isha. How and why you start to write. Your poem is beautiful, as always I'm drawn INto your poem, tasting your words. Very impressive work.

    Best wishes,
    Inge

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    1. Dear Inge,

      I agree with you wholeheartedly. Isha is such a gift to our community in both person and words.

      Blessings,
      Karen

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  5. I LOVE "Birthday At Tatum Park." While I agree that it is sad that the young do not always get the writing support they should, I am so glad that Isha decided to write as an adult. What beautiful work!

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  6. thanks for a very interesting interview. Love the poem too.

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  7. I enjoyed both the interview and the poem. Many people say that if reborn they wouldn't change a thing; like Isha I too would want to make some changes...it's the urge to experience something new, different. The poem is beautiful, especially the stanza before the last. Regards ...paul

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  8. "Birthday At Tatum Park" is a good poem.Isha and Karen congratulations,love and light,angelee

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  9. What a delightful interview, it felt like we were all listening in to a private conversation between two friends. I am so profoundly affected by Isha's final words to the readers and will embrace them tightly. As for the poem itself, I find it so endearingly comfortable to slip into, to devour the words as if sweet sustenance. It's a beautifully written piece of art Isha.

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  10. Isha and Karen, I enjoyed the interview and the poem. I too am a traveler and I lived part time in Auckland. So I know how beautiful it is down under. I can totally relate to the part of your poem where the woman says "please, she says gently, don't
    I look so different from how I feel". It is a beautiful study of
    an ageing person's feelings. I wish you much success in your future endeavors. Congratulations on your published books. Blessings, Connie

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  11. Thank you, Karen, for placing the interview online. And thanks to the poets out there with comments. All one can say to all poets (throughout the world) is to keep on writing with your own unique voice. Keep writing through your life.

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    1. Dear Isha,

      This was such a joy to host this first interview for Whispers. You capture so much, delving below the surface, to give readers something to ponder about. Thank you for allowing me the ability to share a bit of the person, Isha, behind your wonderful poetry. Wishing you the best always.

      Blessings,
      Karen

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  12. Splendid interview, Isha. Great job, Karen. I was good getting to know you a bit more, Isha. Thank you for sharing. Continued blessings to you!

    -MJ
    www.creativeinspirationspp.blogspot.com

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    1. Dear Maurice,

      Thank you so much for sharing these thoughts. It was a blessing to do this interview.

      Best wishes,
      Karen

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