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QM Interview - Cyber Smut

QM's poem 'I Should Have Loved My Babe' is in our Cyber Smut anthology, release date 15 September. For pre-orders visit: gutspublishing.com/books


Tell us a bit about yourself. How did you decide to move to Edinburgh?

I’m actually a current student attending the poetry programme at the University of Edinburgh. I have been writing poems in English for four years. Several years ago, I visited Edinburgh as a tourist and found it an ideal place for living and studying.


How did you get into poetry?

I’m 21 years old, and I wouldn’t say that I ‘got into poetry’ in the first two-thirds of my life. What I am sure about is that, as a teenager, I used to enjoy reading love poems. Naturally, I started to write some myself (in Chinese at first). To me, that was a reasonable starting point because I was much less sophisticated in thinking about other topics such as grief, nature, or politics. ‘I Should Have Loved My Babe’ is a love poem. It makes me feel young again!


Can you tell us how you arrive at a poem?

It is not uncommon in these unpredictable times for people to be separated from their loved ones. Like many, I experience it, feel it, and have something to say about it. The poem itself is not complicated. Its language comes from the course I took, conference I attended, news I heard, my memory and imagination. On a windy midnight, these elements gathered in my head and protested against not being written down.


What attracted you to submit your poem to Cyber Smut, or was it Cyber Lives when you submitted?

I submitted to Cyber Smut because it looks like a promising place for my ‘love poem’ to appear.


What are you working on now?

I’m working on the poetry portfolio for my course. Many pieces in it are about romantic love, human-technology relationships, and the marginalised identity & experience of myself. I wish to build my first book manuscript upon this project.


Who are some of the writers / poets who have influenced your work?

I admire especially the poems by Li-Young Lee and Ocean Vuong.

Can you describe yourself in three words?

silent strange student


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Q.M. is from China and currently lives in Edinburgh. His poems have appeared in Constellations, Lucky Jefferson, The Holiday Café, Scribendi, and Blue Tiger Review, among others.

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