Hello everybody! I’m so thrilled to see you could make it to the 14th installment of ‘Adjusting The Antennae’ in this beautiful month of September. Yes, yes, I know it is the final day of September and I'm really cutting it close but I got it out in time and that's all that matters, right? Right. I hope you are all well, lovely people. And I hope you're enjoying the weather too as those in certain parts of the world are enjoying the beginning of fall whereas our friends on the other side of the world are enjoying the spring. I hope we're doing well in school, eating well, and living right.
Today's guest is extremely special to me and really, everyone should have a person like this in their corner but before I tell you all who this absolutely beautiful deviant is though, I am your host, chromeantennae and I'm glad to have you all here for the 14th episode of ATA. It is an absolute honor to be a part of your day on deviantART.
And my guest for today’s show is the one-of-a-kind person and artist, Lissomer. Sophia here, for those that don't know, has become one of my closest friends here on deviantART (and simply in general). She's an absolutely beautiful person; incredible, incredible writer; and I love her so much. She is a deviant that I recommend everyone get to know and watch because she is that skilled with poetry and she is so sweet.
So I thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to speak with me for the series, Sophia. It would've been practically ridiculous not to have a person as wonderful you as a part of 'Adjusting The Antennae.' You add so much greatness to this series!
Before we start this interview is there anything you’d like to share with our audience on this day? How have you been, any projects you’re currently working on, any interesting facts about you we may not know about you? Anything your mind can think of! From a book you’re currently reading to a few of your favorite deviants or a huge declaration. Ha! Anything that you want to let be known before we start this interview.
Well, hello everyone! And hi to Ricky! It's such an honour that you asked me to participate in this interview. So, thank you, lovely. At the moment I'm just focusing on getting through to the end of the school year - I'll be finished on November 7th, so I'm nearly done! So there's not a huge amount in the works, but I certainly have a lot of ideas for events to hold or introduce over the southern hemisphere's summer. Keep one eye out for some more community-related stuff from me over the next few months, I suppose. Also, while I have the attention of whoever is reading this interview, I'm always looking for more people to collaborate with! Blatant self-promotion, woohoo! Flick me a note if you're keen, I'd love to work with more of the wonderful talent here!
Now onto my first question, Sophia. This is on your previous account known as susurrousity. We’ve discussed at length how you were different then on that account but can you tell our audience a bit about your old account?
There's a pretty good summary of susurrousity
in the "my deviantART story
" journal I wrote! I'll give a quick summary here, too. I started out on deviantART back in mid-2009 with the username singtosavetheworld, when I was fourteen years old; prompted to join by a dear friend (Pinkipuff).
I wrote lots and lots and lots, making a few very close friends along the way, one of whom I've been fortunate enough to meet (DivinitusRenes
, I'm looking at you!). More than a poetry account, my previous account could almost be considered a diary or an outlet. I wrote my every thought and feeling into poetry, especially when things got bad. Somewhere along the line my name became sophiakay, and finally susurrousity
in 2012. In a very real way, I've grown up on deviantART; I've spent the greater part of my adolescence writing and sharing and existing on the site. And in another, very important way, the people I met and the connections I made on my previous account shaped me, helped me grow, and quite possibly saved me.
Secondly, in relation to your old account, how are things different now as Lissomer? With you being on this particular account for 7 months (but really only being active for about a half a year as you’ve mentioned to me before), what has changed? How has the community affected you differently compared to when you were susurrousity? Has the community itself changed?
I wasn't really aware of the community on my previous account, at least not on the level that I am today. I read every day's DLDs for a while, I looked up to people, and I dreamed of one day getting a Daily Deviation, but I wasn't involved so much. So I can't really make comments on the community itself. However, now that I'm getting involved much more than I was them, I can really say that the community is an amazing thing. There are so many amazing, supportive people here who do so much good. They inspire me to be more like them, and I am certainly doing my best to give as much as I'm receiving.
Staying on the community for the time being, you’re really making your mark here on deviantART at an extremely fast rate. It’s incredible impressive but how do you feel about it? Do you have any idea how that really happened and seeing as how you’re still “new” (to this account) or has this all really just caught you off guard?
I am still completely taken aback by the way I've been welcomed and received this time around. I'm not entirely sure how it happened! I do know that it's magical, and that I'm honoured and overwhelmed by the love and support I'm shown and that I witness every day here. I do think that in this community, standing up and throwing yourself into the thick of it will reap great rewards, which is something I've tried to do.
Asides from simply incredible poetry (And I mean, incredible.), you also impact the community by being involved with a lot of different groups. These include groups like BurdenedHearts (Big ups to those guys) as well as the TheWritersMeow. Can you tell our audience about each of these awesome groups you help run and maintain?
: This was the first group I joined, and it's run by the lovely 91816119
. It's a great literature group which I believe is planning a big revamp in the near future!HundredMemories
: A group for an idea Nichrysalis
had, to share 100 memories each in at least 100 words. I love the idea, you should definitely give it a go!dA-Literature
: A very active lit-sharing group where every writer can find their niche! I'm a gallery admin here, voting on correctly categorised literature submissions.SixWordStories
: This is a fantastic and very active group that constantly shares prompts and competitions. I'm a gallery admin here also, helping to discuss submissions. Definitely give this group a watch, six word stories can be so powerful!TheWritersMeow
: A brilliant active group administrated by the lovely Medoriko
! There's always great prompts and great writing to be found over at TWM. Also, keep your eyes peeled for an upcoming lit contest run by the group! BurdenedHearts
: A wonderful group with an important purpose, BH promotes mental health awareness and support for people in need of some love and kindness.TheIllustrious
: This is my special baby. Founded by scarletwave
, and myself, this group aims to share moving, inspirational traditional art, literature and photography of the highest standard. We're looking for new members and submissions at the moment, I'd love it if you went over and took a look or joined the group!
Now onto poetry-centric questions. Your poetry is metaphor-heavy, vivid, and extremely distinct. Your voice is so strong and continues to get even stronger so I wonder how you’ve developed your style to this degree over the years. Was it something as simple as writing all of the time or was it other things that affected the way you wrote (and currently write)? Perhaps other literature or music (as you’ve mentioned to me in the past)?
I've always been an avid reader. I'll read almost anything, and I read all the time. This helped expand my vocabulary and my understanding of words. Especially when I was younger, everything from music to television, books, and films would inspire me to write. I remember days where I would sit down at the kitchen table, headphones in, and just write and write whatever came into my head. Nowadays, I try to learn from the incredible people around me, and gosh there are so many of them! I try and make my poems really worth the time it takes to create them. And of course, I'm a very different person to the eleven-year-old who wrote her first poem after reading 1984 for the first time, and to the fourteen-year-old who started out on this website, and to even the eighteen-year-old who deleted her dA account. I write less now, but I think more. I think it's a good trade-off.
And these fantastic writings of yours have gotten you a number of different awards as well as recognition spots. From a number of features from DailyLitRecognition to the 1 Daily Deviation under your belt, I wonder, after receiving both for the first time, how did those moments feel? And what you have in your gallery now, what would you personally choose to possibly be your second Daily Deviation?
The first time I was featured by DLD, I couldn't quite believe it - I didn't even know what it was, let alone how someone had spotted my
work; I was barely known in those days. It was such a surprise, it really made my day. But my Daily Deviation... gosh, that honour completely floored me. I was giddy for days. "symphony stellata
" is so close to my heart, and I am still infinitely grateful both to yourself, Ricky, and Stephany (@IrrevocableFate
) for believing in my work. As for what I would choose for a Daily Deviation now, that's a horribly difficult question! I think I'd have to say "seastorm
", because I'm so proud of it, and I worked so hard on it. I talk a little more about "seastorm
" further down!
symphony stellataone of my earliest memories -
my mother, steadfast mentality
slowly driving her forward, repeating
repeating re-pea-ting bar by bar
nocturne number eight in d flat major;
never anything less than perfection,
even when fingertips wear thin,
when patience wears thinner,
and chopin fades into dusti am a child born of icy constellations,
cigarette smoke, and canorous chords,
composers whispering at the edge of my sensesblack-garbed, it's grandmother's funeral -
my violin cries massenet's méditation.
my thirteen year-old heart has never
felt so incapable of expression,
so goddamn inadequate, and d major
has never sounded so heartbroken.
we return to a phone call from father,
his composure cracking as he tells us
we'll be doing this all over again;
96 hours, two grandmothers gone,
now all i have is massenet and
it isn't fairwe'd never know it by looking at the sky,
but countless stars waxed requiem to
create us; cenotaphs in the empyrean blacksixteen years old and i can breathe -
And with you being a person who consistently and constantly puts out such phenomenal literature for the masses of dA (Sophia’s works are absolutely amazing.), what is your writing process? What really gets you to take time out of your day and write? What’s your muse on a day-to-day basis?
Oh my goodness, you flatter me too much! My writing process isn't overly routine or steady. I don't write every day, although I try to. I do make sure that whenever I have a thought that's even vaguely poetic, I write it down somewhere where I can find it again. My cellphone is full of small words and snippets I've recorded and then abandoned, ready for me to stumble upon them in the future. It's the same with my locker at work - there are probably a hundred or more small pieces of paper with a word or phrase recorded.
I am often inspired by things that happen around me. I am especially driven to write by things I experience, self-reflection (although this isn't always a good thing!) conversations I have, and people that I am close to. Lately there has been a lot of my work focused on past experience and self-reflection, but I'm hoping to move away from that in the near future. I'd love to write more nature-based poetry, and experiment more with prose.
With you being someone who is getting deeper into the literature community here on deviantART as more time passes, are there any goals you still wish to achieve? Perhaps seniority or became a CV? Is there really anything you want to achieve here still?
Oh, gosh. To be honest, it's not something I've really thought a lot about until this moment. While both seniority and being a CV are incredible honours, right now I'm just enjoying being able to be a part of the incredible community here. I still feel very much a novice both with my writing and within the community, and I'm taking one day at a time, learning so much along the way. I would love to collaborate more, run more competitions, get more involved, etcetera.
And despite the amount of time you’ve been known as Lissomer, I still consider you a veteran of your site with your last account, so I’d love it if you could show our audience a few deviants that you feel deserve more attention or simply writers that you look up to here on this site.
Ooh, there's so many of both, we'd be here all day if I were to really go through that list! Everyone I watch, everyone in my favourites, they're all fab and lovely and incredible writers that I look up to immensely. I'll focus instead on deviants that I think should be wider known. I also look up to all these brilliant people! LadyBitterblue
, and so many more! Definitely go and take a look at their galleries, they're all wonderful people with so much talent!
Now that we’ve gotten around to some of your favorite deviants, what are some of your personal favorites in your gallery? What are a few of the pieces you’re most proud of and why?
All of my pieces are pretty close to my heart, so this is a difficult question. The first piece, however, is undoubtedly the piece I'm most proud of in the last few months, perhaps even ever. "seastorm
" was an exploration into new technical territory for me, in wordplay, in layout, in the amount of time I spent searching for the best way to express myself. I am so, so, so
proud of "seastorm
". The second piece, "memory: marcel
", evokes nostalgic feelings in me. I'm really glad I was able to put the memory into writing, as it is very close to my heart. And thirdly, "practise (FFM 6
)" is from my collection of Flash-Fic-Month
prose. I really enjoyed participating in FFM, as it gave me an opportunity to experiment in prose, an avenue I'd barely explored in years. "practise (FFM 6)
" is one of the pieces I'm most proud of from the month's writing.
at the sea(m)s
of tidal vacancy;
I am the ocean, and
the moon has
cling to reason,
I stumbled on
abrupt. bedridden yet
ever chas(m)ing, I
fell to salt-soaked
ground from a
words were all it took
but all you do is take.
I am waking
and I am shaken
tsunami waves that break
in empty frantic fury;
the briefest repose
or instant of stillness,
I yearn; instead
I am abandoned by language,
I am bound to languish beneath
tempests that swell,
even the most desperate of breaks
for the shore.
memory: marcel"Can I tell you a secret?"
I barely manage
to catch your
out of the air
before it flutters
You are a child with
brimming in your eyes;
transforming you into
a gold-lit silhouette
and I am lost,
a nod (of sorts).
The rustling leaves around us
seem to hush, to coalesce with
the suspension of my breath,
it is almost as if the world
is as wondering and eager as I;
what will come next?
You lean in, and your lips
graze my cheek just once,
"I love you."
practise (FFM 6)G flat arpeggios. Modulation. E flat descending motif. Mistake; start over.
The piano was old and out of tune, but he'd saved up for three years, he'd paid for it; this knowledge made his battered old Collard & Collard the most beautiful darn piano this side of the country. He knew her every mood, the G, E, and F# keys that stuck in cold weather, the low C that twanged before it rained, the aggressive clash of the A's that didn't quite make a perfect octave. They worked together, a strangely lovely synergy of tired piano and determined boy.
Etude. Half-speed, quarter-speed, double-speed. Again. Get bored, play pop songs and add an alberti bass. Segue into Mozart. Accidental accidentals; make it sound intentional. Another etude.
At six on a chilly April morning, the cold air made his fingers feel stiff and unwieldy; they stubbornly refused to respond in a timely fashion to the commands his mind was sending. The heat pump was too expensive to run, so he had to make do
Finally, I’d love to know what works (recent or later) that you have read here that still stick with you? What poems or prose pieces still linger on with you despite the amount of time has passed? Can you share with us a few of those special pieces?
Three pieces that have stayed with me, nestled in my memory even after deleting my previous account:
The radio told us:i couldn't sleep last night.
i didn't know why, but i kept waking up - i was too hot; there were odd noises outside; someone in the apartment was moving around.
i finally went to sleep at dawn, and between the clouds and the sun, the sky was orange.
i updated my facebook status from my phone to,
the sky is orange: why is the sky orange?
a friend responded:
red sky in the morning (or orange) - shepherd's warning!
she didn't know how horribly right she was about to be.
when my alarm went off, i had a coffee and got dressed before going to class. my pen ran out, and i started talking to the girl next to me after asking to borrow one, to which she happily obliged. a single serving friend, i thought, in a class of hundreds. i'll never see her again, i thought, and more's the pity, she's nice.
i went home. had breakfast. found my friend and we went to run errands in central city.
it had been a normal day.
we were stopped at the lights in the centre of town
My stomach was hurting for days. Mama said it was probably ulcer or maybe my drinking of so much Coke. But I ate and I ate and never drank Coke, and still my stomach hurted. Even if Mama went to the place where herbal plants grow to get a bunch of leaves so that she could squish them and put them in my drink, my stomach didn't stop hurting.
Papa said it was time to call the doctor, so he put on his funny straw hat and went to call the doctor. And when he came back, there was a funny-looking man that followed him into our little house. He had long kinky hair with white stuff in it and when he smiled he had very few teeth. His skin was brown, and his clothes was brown, and his hair was brown. He looked like mud.
Papa said, This is Pachiko.
And I said, Hello Pachiko.
And Pachiko smiled with the very few teeth that he had. Then he touched my stomach. He touched it for a long time, long enough for me to ask why he was touching it.
Then he took his hand off my stomach and looked a
Anthropomorphism for BeginnersI found Grandma on the street today
reborn as a rock.
I didn't recognize her at first
without her turquoise-rim glasses
or her always-falling-out-in-public teeth;
she was standing in the gutter on her bald,
Mom tells me Grandma's gone to nag God into slaughtering spiders
and taking the farts out of vegetables,
but if you squint your eyes and tilt your head,
you can see Grandma's crooked nose--
the one that she broke
playing badminton last year--
and the way her eyes crinkle at the corners
when she talks about cheating
to beat me at checkers.
And it's just like Grandma to come back as a rock;
Mom's always called her a stubborn old crook,
and it looks like Grandma's holding a bag of stolen money
under her billowing Hippie-Days shirt sleeves
if you turn her just slightly to the right.
I think I'm gonna keep her in my bedroom.
Just in case.
Some of my favourite favourite favourites from my time as
, and one very special poem written for me by one of my closest friends.
Ghost in the MachineThere were days
her happiness in brightness,
when she would hold
her hands over her eyes
and the cracks of sunlight,
like old paint on drywall,
would shine through
to let her know exactly
who it was that held her.
Who is it?
And at that moment of recognition
...she felt okay.
More than photons
reflecting off of totem shells,
humanity is conch-cradled
in her dusk where light perception
is limited to the moon, where blind
is a swear word and an oath
dependent on a circadian
arcade: she is blind
and going blinder.
she allows herself a curfew
to blow out the lantern
and sing without color
for the first time.
you rely on a perfect balance—
trusting the sunshine to smile
on your bare arms at eight a.m.,
two p.m., half-past six and ticking on,
letting the moon comfort you
as patchwork clouds shawl over
midnight's studded shoulders,
leaving behind aspects of life:
natural, mundane, mechanical,
and self-made doubts.
Irreversible Pauses for Punctuation
i. We’re finding the subtitles of our truths
in the synergisms of our loneliness.
Dead languages have never been happier;
magnified in bold and double quotations
as we slant with the backs of our hands
only daring to brush the proclivity
of our wants.
ii. How I have found your abundance in extinction;
my puissance condensed then liquefied
eugenics in bulkBy the time she was twelve they had already decided she would marry a man who could run a five minute mile and speak seven languages. They chose her a husband the same way they had chosen her eyes and her legs and the pale freckles that interrupted her nose - the same way their parents had designed their children and arranged their marriages, strategic.
Her father called her petite reine. He owned an antique chess board carved from ebony wood and maple. Some days she'd sneak into the library, pry open the old chequered box and pick out one of the queens, and she'd turn it round and round, searching for imperfections. It was a plain, ugly thing, huge and fat in her tiny grasp. She had wondered if he thought of her this way.
She wondered the same now.
Her hands were not her own. A businessman in a white coat had grown them slender and strong, built her carbon fiber bones and nails like arrowheads. Her mother reminded her of this when the
fingernail in the cartouche graven
scrawling ancestors' old hopes
is worth relaying
and never tasting in-
timate moments, only
dust in a mouth named
these evenings feebly creep
breathing uneasy, wheezing
in uneven thieving
screaming seeming the least redeeming thing
but each of these teeth keep scheming
pluck a glitch from
unlucky stitch and
suffer with the
what good am i,
a quick full
Good (Great, Greater, Greatest, You)Good (Great, Greater, Greatest, You)
I hope the title caught your eye,
because this is about you.
Many of us speak in superlatives
and ambiguous language.
In imagery-laden text masquerading
underneath double entendres
keeping us from a part of the truth.
But purple streaks and red bands,
harp strings and soft hands
don't begin to explain
the love I have for you.
So I lay these words down
simple in its vulnerability,
blemished and raw in its purity.
The term lissome fits you in many ways,
but not necessarily it its textbook form.
I speak on the part that is not readily seen
but what is easily most cogent.
Your consciousness' cognizance
is graceful in the way
you fold one syllable over
another, supple in its meaning
that can take many forms
going from idle lies
to how we idolize hollow eyes
and uncovered hip bones.
Elegance is an understatement,
but I refuse to speak in cliche superlatives.
I speak honestly
but not with exaggerated grandeur.
Because your immediate app
And to everyone who tuned in on this day of thanks, I want to thank you all for joining us for the fourteenth episode of “Adjusting The Antennae,” where we try to shift the focus of dA to the greatness of poetry and prose. It is such an honor to have gotten this far with you all and I hope you all know how much I love and appreciate everyone’s support. I also hope that you all enjoyed this fourteenth installment of “Adjusting The Antennae.” Also, also! I hope you all have a wonderful and prosperous day, week, month, and year. And of course, I want to thank the amazing Lissomer for taking time out of her busy schedule to tell us a little bit more about herself and her gorgeous artwork.
On one last point, if you know of a writer who deserves more attention or a writer you believe would make for a good interviewee, please comment below or note me with your suggestion(s)! You're also more than welcomed to add questions along with your suggestions, too. Also, if you enjoyed this interview, please show Sophia some love, spread the word on this series, or just let your thoughts be known on this with a comment!