From the Honey Pot
Everyone knows it’s hard to get published—heck, even people who don’t write know that.
Hector Villeda-Martinez, an undergrad in Concordia’s women’s studies program, decided to forgo the arduous task of sending out his poetry to publishers for their approval and waiting for their less-than-swift rejection letters and publish his poetry himself.
From the Honey Pot is his first collection, but don’t call it an anthology. Calling his work an anthology makes Villeda-Martinez angry. And you won’t like him when he’s angry.
The Link: Have you ever tried to get your work published?
Hector Villeda-Martinez: I tried to publish some of the works, bu
t that’s kind of a bitch. It’s like knocking at a door and getting no response. In Canada, it seems poetry doesn’t get a lot of publication. As a poet your best bet is to be part of an anthology, or wait ‘til you’re a hundred years old. And so, I had to do it for me.
What’s wrong with anthologies?
I think that poetry is art using language and page. The cliché goes that poets are aware of where each letter is placed, and they are attentive to the words they use and why, so I wanted to commit to that. I wasn’t gonna just toss a bunch of poems into a collection and call it an ‘anthology’ or ‘collection’ or some other random name to make it sound interesting.
How many metaphors can you think up for honey? Go.
I think for most people there’s a conjuring of something innocent and unadulterated when it comes to honey. It ain’t white sugar, you know? Interestingly enough, it’s been used cosmetically to maintain youth. Flip through any beauty magazine and they’ll exalt honey as an anti-aging potion and good for moisture. The Egyptians knew this.
Satyrs and fauns are the same thing, right? How closely do your poems deal with that kind of mythology?
I wanted to tell a coming-of-age story using myths. There’s this myth with the faeries where time lapses differently in that realm than does here in the mortal realm, and there a blink can be 10 years here. So the poems are split by season and then by time of the day because the Satyr will travel them in one day. The faery realm, then, is youth, and so there’s all these allusions to things of youth: body piercing, masturbation, rebellion, idealism, a sense of adventure, and like an adventure in a faery realm, these moments are fleeting but nonetheless so intense and so real in that moment.
You can pick up a copy of From the Honey Pot at the Concordia Solidarity Co-op Bookstore (2150 Bishop St.)