He started in poetry with only 17 years old, and at 33, Ben Clark (Ibiza, 1984) is a poet of reference for young generations. Clark is the author of the poems ‘Los hijos de los hijos de la ira’, work with which he received the XXI Poetry Prize Hiperión (Editorial Delirio, 2017). His literary career continued with (Delirio’, 2008); ‘Garbage’ (Delirio, 2011); ‘La Fiera’ (Sloper, 2014), which received the Joan Alcover Ciutat de Palma Award and the El Ojo Critical Prize of RNE of Poetry 2014; and ‘Los últimos perros de Shackleton’ (Sloper, 2016). In 2017 he was awarded the XXX Loewe Poetry Prize for his book ‘La policía celeste’ (Visor, 2018).
Is it crazy to devote oneself to poetry nowadays?
As it is the world, it seems to me more crazy to live without poetry, without attending to the poetic fact, to what makes us human. If we all dedicate ourselves a little more to poetry, things would go much better.
Where does your literary passion come from?
From the conviction that it is possible to get to understand the world and our place in the world, and that the way to do it is through literature and art.
How were your beginnings in the world of poetry?
In the world of poetry is always beginning. I’m still starting and all the beginnings are difficult.
Which authors are those that have most influenced your work?
Many authors of the so-called generation of 50, such as Ángel González or Claudio Rodríguez. Also American poets like Anne Sexton or Stephen Dunn.
How is your creative process?
It consists of looking for something that I do not know what it is to express something that is not easy to express with a selection of words that I do know.
What are the most recurrent themes in his work? Which ones would you like to face in the future?
The big issues are always the same and I think that is the case in almost all artistic manifestations: the passage of time, death and love. All poems can relate, in some way, to these three themes. I would like to explore more happiness, get to write a good poem about being happy.
Is there a situation in your personal experience that you have not been able to express through poetry?
If I could say the situations from my personal experience that I have not been able to express in a poem, I could write a poem about it. What you can not talk about is better shut up.
You have recently returned to Ibiza, and now you have left again… What role does the island play in your professional life?
I currently live in Málaga. Ibiza has been sold to tourism and right now it seems a very uninteresting place to live. More and more young people are leaving because you can not live there. Maybe I can go back, someday, but not at the moment.
Do you think that in Ibiza poetry is a precious art?
Today would you dare to say that poetry is a revolution?
No. Poetry is, at best, resistance.
With what word (or words) would a poet close this interview?
Remembering that money can not be drunk and that a society without culture is doomed to fail.