PPP Ezine: Who are your favorite poets, if possible, also tell us what makes them your favorite?
ACT: I have never thought about it. I never read much poetry by famous poets. I do admire the work of several of my contemporary poets that are my Facebook friends.
PPP Ezine: This one is a direct descendent of Matthew Arnold’s Touchstone Method: ‘They say that there are lines in a poem that make its heart. You may call them the poetry of poetry. Do you remember some such lines of yours or from some of your favorite poets that will help us understand your vision of poetry? If yes, please do give us some of those lines.
ACT: No, I do not.
PPP Ezine: There has been a debate raging among the lovers of free verse and formal verse. Where do you stand in this debate? Why?
ACT: I work in both metered rhyme, and free verse. It depends on my subject matter and what mood I am in, also to what journal I am submitting my work. My true love is light and amusing rhymes.
PPP Ezine: You have been writing for a long time. If you could tell us something about what inspired you to write poems in the first place, and then, what kept you going, it’d be inspiring for the new poets.
ACT: I started writing in 1965. I was inspired by the Viet Nam war since my brothers were in the military then. Afterwards, it was the typical teenage angst and young loves that inspired me.
PPP Ezine: Give our new poets a few tips (3 or more) for composing well.
ACT: Always carry a note book and pen or pencil with you. Anyplace and anything can be a poem. Write, write, write … you can always refine alter. Just write what you see and what you feel at the momen.
PPP Ezine: Rejection is a life-long friend or enemy of a poet. Please tell us how you responded/respond to your rejections in the past, and now?
ACT: I always just say “thank you for taking the time to consider my work.” And then move on. It is never easy to be told you are not good enough – I do not like failure, but it is a part of life.
PPP Ezine: A poet has a cultivated mind. Give us some pointers to cultivate the poetic faculties/genius.
ACT: I do not have any pointers. I was a visual artist in my youth, and I just write or draw what I feel, nothing more, and nothing less.
PPP Ezine: You have been published and read widely. Please give some tips on submission that increases the chances for selection.
ACT: Just make sure to know what the publisher wants. I write all types of poems, and I do submit the wrong ones to the wrong journals at times, and that leads to more rejections. Know your audience