Wednesday, 5 June 2013

CANDY BRIGHT: The poet speaks.

I first heard Candy read at a Fire River Poets open mic at the Brewhouse. What struck me from the start was the immediacy of her work; it grabbed me from the first word. I was impressed by her emotional honesty and the beauty of her language. Here I thought is a poet who can transform everything the world throws at her into beauty. Her work is honest and accessible to all.
I had the honour of appearing alongside her in the Freeze Frame anthology at the end of last year. Candy is also a member of Juncture 25.
In 2005 her first collection was published Candy Colours, one reviewer described it as “straight from the heart…a lady who understands and faces life full on.”

Let’s hear what Candy has to say.

 I started writing poetry when I was about 12. Very early on I found words on the page very comforting, even the harsh ones; I think because it was a way of explaining things in what was a very confused world. Once they were there, which would take some thought-they remained predictable.
I spent years having this tumultuous love affair with poetry and after many a lovers tiff would tear up my work –only to be drawn back in again. Nowadays I use a laptop as well as pen and paper but back in the day I would get what I came to know as the ‘pull of pen’.
It has light and shade of course and I often think mine has too much shade but that is how it is. Once a poem is complete there is a satisfaction, a release of tension not unlike love. It does not however last forever.
I was a busy reader when I was younger-more than I do now-I suppose I had less distractions, and it became clear to me that when words work-they really work and it still makes me feel good.

There are so many poets that I admire, so many poems that I have read that make you just feel-WOW!! And it isn’t a feeling you can really share, it tends to be a party for one. To mention a few: Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, Simon Armitage, Tony Harrison,  Mark Haddon, Stevie Smith,  Phillip Larkin, W.B.Yeats,  W.H. Auden, Mary Oliver, Christina Rosetti, Phil Lynott, Maya Angelou …………………and so many more . Poets I meet with now and have the amazing opportunity to share with, to be challenged by, to trust enough to speak up with. I am talking about the poetry group JUNCTURE 25-it is a real pleasure and honour to be part of this group. There will be times when we meet and one or other reads one of their poems and I am transported to that place, that feeling .   If I crave anything it is that connection.

Life experiences and all that entails. I am mostly driven emotionally so my work will come from that rather than perhaps –nature. Whilst this may sound egocentric I believe that whilst we are unique we can all share a theme. I get a real kick out of someone relating to my work as I do when I relate to someone else’s.

I tend to favour free verse and often a poem will find its own rhythm, sometimes rhyme works and sometimes not. I have been challenged by writing to form and it does require more discipline and I have enjoyed the experience. It does not always come naturally. It is something I struggle with, often feeling I should be more academic but am always afraid of losing passion………….

More of more of the same hopefully! I hope that the poetry group I belong to will publish an anthology this year. I should start a web page !!! I should do a lot of things. I am the world’s worst (best?) procrastinator, however I have started the book-the one that’s been in my head for about 20 years-so maybe once its on the page it will leave me alone J. We have some gigs coming up which I am very excited about including the Porlock Arts Festival- Porlock has a great history with poets so its cool to live here.

What have you been doing all this time????????????? I don’t know that I have an answer though.


I would like to be a South American novel, I love the way they write with colour and passion with few holds barred.

Here are a couple of Candy’s poems:


I don’t remember your name
your face Is blurred, your touch less so
and thirty five years have gone.
But I remember your words:

Falling mouth to mouth
Through the random serenity of hell
I loved you then.

We would eat in the spaghetti houses
in Goodge street and  fill up on
cheap Chianti before making
our way to the hotels in Paddington
where we would trip the light fantastic
in our twilight world.

Always the night.

I was skipping along
being shiny and bright, picking up
before putting down when bored;
my playmates who kept the devil at bay.
You must have been escaping-
her I guess
whoever she was.

You were always gone by the morning
and I would make  my way back ,
back from our secret world
to the one I was escaping too.

I smiled,
it was ok.

You had admired amongst other parts
the mole on my stomach.
I agreed with you and said
I liked it as it broke up the

monotony of my abdomen.

You smiled

and said that had I stayed stateside
I just would have said “it’s neat”.

I found your words in my notebook
The day after I told you I was bored
and called time.

I smiled.

Little by little I have let go
the brittle armour that held me so,
the mole too has gone.

Your words remain and

I smile.

Candy Bright 2013


The room was calling her again
it was time to extinguish the light
she might call but no one came

Now and then she loved the pain
she welcomed in the night
the room was calling her again

Crimson pools where she had lain
testimony to her plight
she might call but no one came

Others may show their disdain
but she had little left for fight
the room was calling her again

Shallow breath her life to claim
it goes so slow out of spite
she might call but no one came

Be so still this too shall wane
and scars heal on limbs so white
the room was calling her again
she might call but no one came

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