Interviews

I write poetry as it is an inherent gift in expressing thyself – A Coversation with Jamaican Poet Christena Williams

Written by Xavier Murphy

Jamaican Christena AV Williams is an aspiring historian, however, she is a renowned poet and Author of Pearls Among Stones published by Canadian, Brian Wrixon and recently republish by the Author.

She dabbles in philosophy and history. Christena began Writing at age ten, and ten years later published her first Collection of poetry. This eventually earned her one of the most prestigious awards ever given to youths in Jamaica. The Prime Ministers National Youth Awards for excellence in Arts and Culture and an Additional award by JAYECAN (youth empowerment award). Christena is a phenomenal gift and feels she is destined and determined to share her words with the hearts of humanity. She is committed to write for the hopeless and share wisdom from which God speaks through her, while spilling Ink on paper.

Author’s Description of Pearls Among Stones
It is a collection of my deep secrets, pain, fear, wisdom, joy, happiness, my creative genius and my inspirations. It is a creative masterpiece of different themes and it is for everyone to read and enjoy and can appreciate its deep sentiments for humanity. The Pearls among stones are the homeless, the broken hearted, the righteous ones, spiritual, the doers, the revolutionist, poets, writers, the ones who need a voice, hope, need to be inspired, the ones who inspire. It is anyone who is willing to stand up for their beliefs in a positive way and who are willing to share their stories to whomever would listen. I speak to many people, and many people have spoken to me; this book is their voice, and their way of expression, so my book is not mine alone it is for whoever made it into what it is. This book is also for my mother.

How long have you been writing?
Well, from birth I have pen, crayon, pencil a write but base on papers and old writing books I can say it is from age ten it came to my full awareness.

What inspires you to write stories and poems?
Inspiration is a connection between me and object and people, therefore anything and anyone can inspire me. I write poetry as it is an inherent gift in expressing thyself. In delving deeper I am inspired by life, people, God, nature, spirituality, music, politics, aesthetics and so much more. I am also inspired to write as I wish to share my experience as well as others experience that whoever reads it may find some peace. So many things and many people can inspire my poetry because poetry for me is a gift from God and I find it to be a part of my spiritual growth.

Which do you enjoy most — writing for fiction or non-fiction?
Fiction is made up stories or fantasy while nonfiction is a representation of real events and people so therefore my poems are mostly real emotions and few fantasies. My work is to heal people and fantasy does not necessitate to reality. I am drawn to real life events, people’s emotion, experiences and life’s mysteries so I enjoy nonfiction the most with a little bit of fiction.

Tell us about your last book Pearls Among Stones?
Pearls among stones is a collection of poetry under varied themes that is believed by reviewers and readers to tackle social, political, cultural, psychological and romantic issues. This book was first published by Canadian, Brian Wrixon in 2013 and later republish by the author in 2015. This collection is accessible via facebook writer’s pages, Amazon and other online outlets, JCDC in Kingston and by the author. In regards to more details of this book is the review by Dr. Glenville Ashby in a synopsis:
“Williams’ “conscious art” tackles social issues, although there is enough dabbling in psychoanalytic introspection that makes for a broadly defined offering. There is an unmistakable confidence in her work. She utters words of unflappable warning to her detractors. However, time has ripened her art. Compelling production Overall, this is a compelling production where the artist forges sonnets, odes, acrostics, and other classical poetic styles, preferring to lean on a prosaic and narrative style, accompanied with a pulsating rhythmic brio. She uses dactylic metre with resounding impact and her line and beat are, for the most part, airtight. The longing of a Martin Luther King Jr. Alas, readers can only fathom Williams’ breathtaking display before an audience. Short of such, they will find the printed word equally mesmerizing. Rating: Highly recommended

What comments do you hear most often from your readers on the poems in the book?
The reoccurring comment I hear and read is that individuals are inspired in a positive way and they see similarities of experiences. They are also connected to my work and find the questions provoked and evoked to be for further discussions. Others found it to be emotional, cultural, vivid experiences, radical and beautiful.

What are your 2 favorite books of all time?
As a lover of many books I would say that my favourite two would definitely be A world of poetry for cxc by Mark Mcwatt and The Secret Garden by F.Hodgson Burnett and for bonus, The rose that grew from Concrete by Tupac shakur.

Who are your favorite authors?
My favourite Authors and poets are: Maya Angelou, Langston Hughes, Emily Dickson, Tupac shakur, Louise Bennett- Coverley and Bob Marley.

Do you have any advice for new writers?
My advice to new writers is that one should not go with the intention into writing as a money making business because disappointment awaits you. Also rejection is an inevitable experience but this experience will prepare you to be a better and stronger writer. And lastly, the more you read is the more you can write and to surround self with creative Individuals so you can learn more.

Seven day, six nights, all expense paid, my vacation destination is…
The place to be with an opportunity like that would definitely be Paris, France.

My favorite guilty pleasure is
Sundae ice cream.

On behalf of the readers of Jamaicans.com thanks for providing us with this interview. Do you have any closing thoughts for our readers?
I prefer to share a piece.

Possibilities

When you have tasted possibilities
It is very difficult to accept impossibilities
I want to travel Land, sea, oceans
Ride clouds and waves endlessly.

I want to experience my dreams and live it free
Like birds in atmospheric air
I yearn to be so much and more
My dreams are no longer a vague imagination
It is now possibility and a hypothesis ready to be tested.

I postulate a theory that I will be known
Like William Shakespeare
I tell you, when you have tasted Possibilities
It is very difficult to accept impossibilities.

-Christena AV Williams
* Poem read at Prime Minister‘s National Youth awards and in international anthologies.

Get the Pearls Among Stones eBook or paperback on Amazon. Follow Christena AV Williams on Facebook and Twitter and visit her channel on YouTube.

About the author

Xavier Murphy