Bukowski is the guy who cracked it open for me…he showed me the secret of being a writer. IT’S OKAY TO SOUND LIKE YOURSELF…in fact, there is nothing better.
No one does Ecstasy and Bliss better than Rumi. He dissolves in the mouth of God, like a sugar cube, and we dissolve with him.
I wanted to put The Beat Generation but I wasn’t sure that would fly. No work hits me harder than The Beats and Kerouac. This body of work was like my generation…facing automation and corporatization, tearing open the control panel to try and find their souls amidst all the wires.
No one puts the state of awe so simply and so elegantly as Mary Oliver does. Her words take you by the hand and lead you safely on all of her walks.
Neruda showed me that it was okay to change the mask, to wear a different face. In one poem he is writing politically and in another, an ode about his wife…every single time, we believe him.
Ry Downey is a poet from Seattle, WA. He is editor in chief of the new poetry magazine, BEATIFIC. His book, Flowers Leaning Toward the Sun was published in June. He loves poetry, cats, pretty lights, and football.”