|Interview with Poet Darrell Herbert|
Brandon Harris: What got you into poetry?
Darrell Herbert: My experiences really played a major role towards getting into poetry. Those experiences of downfall allowed me to find myself.
Brandon Harris: When were you first published?
Darrell Herbert: I was first published at the age of eighteen in "The Best Teen Writing of 2014," by Hannah Jones.
Brandon Harris: What are your goals and plans as a writer?
Darrell Herbert: My goals and plans as a writer is to be heard. Making people uncomfortable and forcing them out of their comfort zone is what mostly occurs when the theme gets across. On one hand, I'm expressing myself in such a mysterious way. On the other hand, people get glimpses of my life.
Brandon Harris: Who are your inspirations?
Darrell Herbert: Some of my inspirations include Sylvia Plath, Ki Ana Tonge, Kai Davis, Jasmine Mans, Tupac Shakur, among many others.
Brandon Harris: What do you consider to be your biggest achievement?
Darrell Herbert: My biggest achievement was from my first published poem "Racism in America." It was a final inclusion in "The Best Teen Writing of 2014," by Hannah Jones, and won me a national silver medal and gold key from the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards of 2014. The poem was also taught in West Chester East High School by a high school teacher named Richard Mitchell.
Brandon Harris: How do you feel your work can inspire others?
Darrell Herbert: I feel my work can inspire others by helping them find their voice. To not be scared of rejection, to not care about what other people are going to say or think. In the end, the success speaks for itself.
Brandon Harris: Where can the readers find your work?
Darrell Herbert: My work can be found in The Best Teen Writing of 2014," by Hannah Jones, Writers- Black Artists Connected Blog, A Shared Format 4 Poets, Yellow Chair Review, Poetic Treasures Magazine, Section 8 Magazine, Blacktopia: Black Utopia Society Blog, Works in Progress newspaper, Woman of P.O.W.E.R. blog, Media Blast Press, Madness Muse Magazine, cocktailmolly, New York Rising Blog, thisis50.com, downsouthhiphop.com, Beat Yard Magazine, All Black Entertainment Magazine, Southeast Hip-Hop Magazine, as well as in HangTime Magazine and The Lemonade Stand Magazine.
Brandon Harris: As a poet we would love to release a piece of yours? What do you think?
Darrell Herbert: I am comfortable with that idea.
Brandon Harris: When did you complete your first piece?
Darrell Herbert: I completed my first piece of poetry at the age of five.
Brandon Harris: Who’s work do you enjoy to read?
Darrell Herbert: I don't necessarily enjoy reading just one person's body of work. Instead I just get inspiration from other kinds of writers that the world has to offer.
Brandon Harris: What are your hobbies outside of writing?
Darrell Herbert: Outside of writing I enjoy volunteering and donating to charities. It really does the soul justice when you know that you are impacting someone else in a positive manner.
Brandon Harris: Where do you plan to be in ten years?
Darrell Herbert: I see myself earning more publications of poetry, getting more awards for my poems, as well continuing my volunteerism and charity work.
Brandon Harris: Reading a few pieces of your work I feel you put a lot of emotion and thought into them. How long does it take you to create a piece?
Darrell Herbert: It all depends on how I feel at the moment of writing. If I'm happy, it gradually comes. But, whenever I'm disappointed, sad, or just angry about something, the words just flow more rapidly. I let my emotions speak for me.
Brandon Harris: In “Urinallisim” you use some extremes, what is the concept there?
Darrell Herbert: The concepts of my poem "Urinallisim" has to deal with stereotypes of zodiac signs, depression, illnesses, suicidal tendencies, drug usage, infidelity, among many other difficult subjects.
Brandon Harris: Anything you wish to say to the readers?
Darrell Herbert: Be the star that you were born to be. Only you can realize the truth.