interview series

Interview Series – Lotte Mitchell Reford

When / why did you start writing poetry? – answers in adjectives

late, slow, sticky, sleepy, softly, are those all adjectives? 

How do you write a poem? – answer in five verbs.

run, jump, land, twist, look

What is your definition of what experimental poetry is?

Almost all poetry begins as or began as experimentation, even if it has now become accepted or canon. Poetry is playing, except very serious playing. But not too serious because then it becomes scary. Poetry should be funny, it should experiment with being funny. It’s like putting your tongue into a big hole in your tooth, when it hurts but also feels good. And why are you, a grown adult, doing something as silly as putting your tongue into that big hole in your tooth. Why and how did you get such big hole in your tooth. Teeth are a thing that you should take care of, but they are always trying to leave. I guess, it’s about finding the edges of things, isn’t it?

Have you done many interviews before? Do you find them repetitive? Repetitive? Repetitive?

I hope one day to be successful enough to be bored by interviews. It will take a long time because I am very, very, intellectually needy. 

What’s a favorite snack you like when poet-ing?

Easy peelers, chewy sweets, beer. I love grapes but I’m scared my dog will eat them and die. 

What are you kinda obsessed by?

I only know this when I read my poems. Teeth. Bones. My dog. Dead cats. Dead bears. Dead wolves. Animals generally, and their pain. Photographs. Cum. Tennessee. Mist. Churches. 

Do you tell your social circle about your poet-ing?

I talk about nothing else. That’s not true. But yes, I think it is important to define myself as a poet even though that’s not how I make my money. I’m not a capitalist, I don’t fucking care how people make their money, I care about what they are good at and interested in and love. 

How do you rebel?

Ironically given my previous answer, by writing marketing content for tech startups. It is rebellious because I am a completely different person when doing it. I really should use a pen name. For the marketing, I mean. 

Tell me a literary / science fact or joke, please.

Bats are really bitchy and love to gossip. When one of them flies away from the roost, all the others start squawking about them. This is above human hearing range, so hard to pick up on generally. 

What’s your fav colour, poet, snack. (this is your pen name!)

Favourites are for decisive people. Racing green, Sophie Robinson, Quorn cocktail sausages. These are all subject to change. And would be a bad pen name for tech marketing.


Lotte Mitchell Reford is a Glasgow-based poet writing about art, long roads, and sex, via London and Virginia. She has been published in journals in both the US and UK, and her first pamphlet, we were so far from the sea of course the hermit crabs were dead is available from Broken Sleep Books on 30th June 2021.


Twitter: @LReford

Insta: @lottemitchellreford

By Michelle Moloney King

Artist. Poetish.