Poet Interview Series: Dhavita Filek
We are very proud to feature the very talented poet Dhavita Filek, from Nova Scotia, Canada, as part of our poet interview series. As soon as I spoke to Dhavita, after her popular entry to our Poetry Contest on Instagram, I knew she was super special. Her poem not only struck a cord with me, her beautiful words immediately resonated with all the a writers business community. Dhavita, a mom to small kids, gets inspired by meditation and reflection and writes from the bottom of her soul. Dhavita has published her first poetry collection in the book “Purification” which can be bought from Amazon.
See the full interview with Dhavita Filek below.
Where do you live and how does it influence your writing?
I live in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada. Although our winters are cold and our summers short, nature definitely influences my writing. Particularly the ocean, I feel it has a maternal quality that is so soothing. Anytime I'm feeling uninspired, I head to the beach. I'm fortunate to live minutes from some of the most beautiful beaches in our country.
When did you first become passionate about poetry and what attracted you to it?
I think song lyrics were my first introduction to poetry. Back before the internet, I remember rewinding cassette tapes to try and figure out every lyric to my favourite songs. I love the freedom poetry offers- there are no rules.
What inspires you to write?
My connection to my higher self is my source of inspiration. Every piece is a reflection of the relationship I have with my truest nature, soul. I think this source of creativity is accessible to everyone through any number of ways, but I find mediation works best for me.
Do you publish your Poetry on other channels but Instagram?
My debut book, 'Purification' is available on Amazon and I also cross post on my Facebook Page, 'Dhavita Poetry'
Who is your favorite Instapoet and why?
Nayyirah Waheed. She's able to take some very complex issues (toxic masculinity, racism, and sexism to name a few) and turn them into beautiful poems that unite instead of divide.
Tell us a bit about your personal style.
This is always a tough question for me to answer. I truly believe that the words I write are the ones I need to hear the most. It's almost as though my higher self guides me through my own work. Despite being deeply personal, I like to think that my work resonates with others and can hopefully help guide them back to their highest selves.
Can you tell us a little about your writing process? How do you come up with poems and how do you edit them?
Well, I'm a Mom of two, so as much as I'd love to say I write in a beautiful location overlooking the ocean, the truth is I'm generally writing in the notes section of my phone while nursing, cooking, etc. I find inspiration can strike at anytime! I generally start by just free writing whatever is in my head and then will try and eliminate as many words as possible while maintaining the essence of the piece. I also love to find artwork that matches the spirit of the poem. Instagram has some fantastic artists who've graciously allowed me to use their work.
Do you support yourself through writing financially, or do you have a day job and what is it?
I am so grateful to live in Canada where I am currently enjoying 18 months of maternity leave. I would love to be able to fully support my family through my writing but also have a great job to return to in the meantime.
How many hours a day do you spend writing and what helps you to get into the writing mood?
I write for very short periods multiple time throughout the day. Truthfully, I'm always in the writing mood but when I need to clear my head and focus, I return to my practices of mediation and yoga.
And what’s the best moment you’ve had with your poetry so far?
Publishing my book has been the highlight of 2019. To have created something for no reason other than to create and then to have the opportunity to share it with the world is such a blessing.
Tell us about your book. How long did it take to write? What inspired you to write it?
'Purification' was born out of what was essentially a complete breakdown. I was struggling with Post-Partum Anxiety and Depression. I leaned heavily on my practice of mediation to guide me though and one night I had a very powerful meditative experience. A sense of 'knowing' just came over me and within two months I had written the book. It was a very cathartic experience.
How do you respond to writer’s block or not knowing what to write?
Meditate. practice yoga, get outside, and connect with my children
What are you working on next?
I'm working on my next book. This one is stretching me outside of my comfort zone but the call to write it is very strong. I don't have a timeline yet. I'm just letting it flow naturally.
Where would you like to see yourself in three years time.
In three years I see myself still writing but also doing more public speaking. I also see myself on the path to becoming a meditation teacher.
What is your strategy you to grow your audience?
My only strategy is to remain completely authentic. I know my work will never be for everyone but as long as I write from the heart, my work will always be for someone.
What advice would you give young poets just starting out?
Be brave. Write the words that bring you to tears. Write the words that make your hands shake as you press post. Your bravery is needed.
Do you think poetry has a greater purpose?
I think like any art form, poetry can bring people together. Poetry is just another way to tell stories and stories are what remind us we're more alike than we think.
Photography: Savannah Webber (@selfgrowthsavvy)