Q & A with Reeve Powers Conducted by Sydney Joy Willis

What’s Loved Will Blossom In The End

Available August 15th

Purchase it here!


pictured: cover of book (top), first page (bottom)

Would you say you completed this book despite the Covid-19 pandemic or possibly because of the pandemic?

Most of the pages were written pre-COVID-19. I have to admit it, though, it was a factor in releasing it sooner. I was lacking lust for life as one would during a time like this & my good pal / band mate, Cole Shugart, sat me down at a bar & said “why don’t you piece a book together”. It seemed to do the trick.

What’s the inspiration behind the cover art by tattoo artist Sean Drennen?

I used to manage the shop, Gold Club Electric, Sean worked at before the tornado took us out. I saw him scratching at a plexiglass plate with a dry point pen & realized he was scratching a reaper into it. He said he was going to make ink prints with it & I just knew that I would ask him to use it for something one day. To me, it symbolizes a constant “death” within one’s own self & waking up each day reborn again with no obligation to be anything you once were. Constantly evolving is my favorite part of life.

What are some recurring themes in the book? Is there anything in particular that you are trying to communicate with the world?

I feel like I cover a lot of ground in just 40 pages. The main thing that ties them altogether is, I think, they’re consistently unveiled. I’ve always loved books that influenced me to feel confident about saying the things I honestly feel while keeping an open mind to the facts and opinions around me. In reality, we are all too hard on ourselves. We should be able to remain open with the world; learning & growing without shame of a younger self.

Do you have a favorite poem or prose piece in the book?

Ode to the Barfly is the most impersonal piece of them all, so it’s naturally my favorite. It was actually the last poem written before the book was edited.

I wrote it while I was drunk on the steps of a raging bar before a friend drove us home. I remember looking around & writing each line down as I witnessed the evening. A crowded strip is my paradise & hell all at once!

What experiences, substances, music, etc. fuel your ability to write?

I’ll write about anything if that overwhelming feeling brings me to it. I even have a piece of prose about holding my piss in New York City. I don’t believe you need sadness or any kind of emotion to write something that speaks to at least one human. Describing a moment that amused you will suffice when all else fails.

As for substances & music...

if I’m writing at home, it usually begins with some kind of red wine, weed (if I’m lucky enough down here in God’s country) & Bill Evans Trio on the speakers followed by Chopin, Dvorák & whatever classical composers I’m feeling as I mosey on into the night. Anything with lyrics involved throws me off for some reason. Jazz & Classical songs give me a rhythm to type along to. Sometimes, I imagine I’m playing the piano with the typewriter & words fall out.

What do you find most frustrating about writing poetry?

After coming home from work & you’re finally done with whatever bullshit you had to do all day for a thin pay, poetry is there with the bed made in fresh linens, Sinatra on the speakers, beer on the nightstand with pre-roll smokey waiting you & never in my life have I found that frustrating! That was a little much, but you get it, right?

What’s something that you enjoy about being a poet?

My brain is like an overstuffed suitcase balancing on a broken wine glass & poetry gives it a reason to.

What time of day do you usually write? 

When it’s too late to reasonably call up a friend or make a sandwich.

What role has your community played in your creative endeavors?

Friends & foes alike, I’m surrounded by hardworking creatives at all times. This town has a lot of that. It keeps me driven to keep on keepin’ on.

Tell me a little bit about your typewriter.

I have 4 typewriters at the moment.

My main one is a 1963 Smith-Corona Super Silent I found in a junk pile behind an old church in Tecumseh, MI. I scored two that day actually. The other is a Smith-Corona Classic 12, which I’m unsure the year... but it’s from the 60’s as well. It belonged to a pharmacy, so it has an emblem of the pharmacy name & comes equipped with the Rx button!

My lady got me a 1920’s Underwood Noiseless Portable that’s ebony & slick looking. Then there’s my first typewriter, it doesn’t have a special story, but I got it here in Nashville for my 1st book at a vintage shop. It’s an 80’s German Adler, faded navy blue & they were some of the first plastic typewriters to be made.

I plan to have a wall of these things one day.

Who are some poets/authors/songwriters who have inspired you?

Bob Dylan, Caleb Followill, George Orwell, Charles Bukowski, Walt Whitman, Roald Dahl, Shel Silverstein... my list & range of people goes on & on. But, those are some of my favorites.

Keep an eye out for more books, limited music releases & art from Reeve Powers on his online store via Just Merch:  https://justmer.ch/collections/reevepowers

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