“I do not like these patients [with schizophrenia] … I feel them to be so far distant from me and from everything human, Sigmund Freud wrote in a letter at the beginning of the previous century. For such a colossal figure in mental health matters, this callousness is jaw-dropping, but what it illustrates is the extensiveness of prejudice towards people suffering from illnesses of the mind. These days we try to pluck the stigma that’s so deeply rooted in our history from our daily thoughts and actions. We work at dismantling preconceptions through art.

Our tenth issue of Poetry Is Dead is weird as fuck, and we love it.

The chapbook has taken on a variety of forms in the digital age. Produced by Poetry Is Dead and curated by the magazine’s founder Daniel Zomparelli, Sixteen Pages presents a series of sixteen-page digital chapbooks from around the world that visitors can view using a smartphone or tablet. 

Our Guest Editor Dina Del Bucchia gives you a peak inside the latest issue.

Think back to when you started writing. What’s an earlier influence you outgrew, abandoned, or turned against?

When I was 4 or 5 years old, I recorded myself talking into a voice recorder, telling stories about whatever images came into my head. Later found by my older sister, these stories provided ample entertainment for my family - both because I was unreserved in my thoughts and also because The the content and characters were considered absurd by my family. A common thing I do is to place myself in binaries within colonial narratives, as either a part of, or in resistance to. The story feels stronger to me when I let myself be both. Storytelling is old; mixedness is old. I’m visually writing to get closer to old.

Think back to when you started writing. What’s an earlier influence you outgrew, abandoned, or turned against?

I used to read a lot of young adult fantasy, Marvel comics—anything that gave its characters extraordinary abilities. As a child I was (and still am) fascinated with magic, divinity and power beyond the ordinary. That’s what I think turned me onto poems. They offered a medium that probes beneath the surface images of the world and enters a state of heightened possibility. In her book, Meat Heart, Melissa Broder writes, “Somewhere I stopped looking for magic”.  After a few abortive attempts at a first chapter, I turned away from fantasy novels, but I’m still looking for magic (and of course I went to see The Avengers movie too).

Think back to when you started writing. What’s an earlier influence you outgrew, abandoned, or turned against?

I was very influenced by the Romantics, and the Beat Generation interpretation of a modern yet Romantic view of life. This led me, at first, to write a lot about idealist, lofty subjects, a veneration of corporeal beauty, a concentration on the alignment between aesthetics off the page turning up on the page. I wouldn’t say I’ve abandoned this tradition, but at the suggestion of two profoundly influential undergraduate mentors, I’ve ‘turned against’ it in the sense that I try to flip the subject on its head. I’m more interested in unraveling those issues, complicating them, rather than merely celebrating them.