SCOTT HASTIE: MAIN FEATURE INTERVIEW – fully revised and updated…




Scott Hastie is a successful British born poet and writer, who has been has been commercially published in the UK for over thirty years now. He currently has on fewer than fourteen titles in print, including a novel and eight collections of poetry – all also available in e book format.

In recent years, the spiritual tone in his maturing poetic voice is starting to draw increasing acclaim and attention from an worldwide audience, especially in the U.S. Asia & the Middle East. 

Scott’s current poetry is very much a positive and sparkling affirmation of human potential, with a growing emphasis on spiritual awareness.

Given the impact of his recent pieces, published in titles like the soulful and beautifully designed anthology Meditations and their fast growing cross-cultural popularity around the world, a much more comprehensive collection of all his latest work, entitled Angel Voices was brought forward for publication by Centuria in September 2014.

Then, two years later in 2016 – And , somewhat miraculously, along came threads… Quickly establishing itself  as the definitive collection of Scott Hastie’s poetry to date… Already widely translated and published to worldwide acclaim, covering as it does the sheer scale of this stunning poet’s sublime creative journey.

The first edition of a new collection of Scott Hastie’s more recent new poems, entitled Pranic Poetry has since been published in March 2020. Seemingly always destined to be released at the very beginning of the Coronavirus pandemic, it really struck a chord with readers all around the world. Hence the accelerated release of his first fully retrospective collection Timeless: the best of Scott Hastie’s poetry 1990-2020 and it’s companion volume Splinters of Light: quotations from the poetry of Scott Hastie. The planned publication of both these titles soon being advanced by six months, into the Autumn of the same year, to help satisfy the ever accelerating international demand for his work.

“It is at times like these that we need the fairest glimpses of hope, rejuvenation and a deeper understanding of the potential to realize our very best – especially in the face of such on-going adversity. Perhaps this is why Scott Hastie’s poetry achieves such an impact and is so well received around the world.

“Scott Hastie’s writing inspires such clarity of thought, perception and heartfelt compassion for the emotional rainbow that is the human spectrum of existence, shedding multitudes of color and light where otherwise there might have only been storms, darkness, sorrow and pain, all without any real hope of joy and redemption.” 

“Timeless is surely an appropriate trademark for some highlights of Scott Hastie’s body of work to date. After all, he has produced some of the most gallant and elegant poetry of the 20th & 21st Centuries.”

“As in deep prayer, the quotes in Splinters of Light will bring you to the depths within your soul. These are not quotes you can read only once. They will call you to write them and paste them on mirrors and desks as constant reminders of who you really are and the true meaning of your life. These quotes will feed you in places you didn’t know you were hungry. A marvelous poetic work.”

Interest grew to such a level following the publication of both Timeless and  Splinters that it was decided to also quickly re-issue his two earliest ‘Younger Man’ collections, Selected Poetry and New Poetry (first published in 1991 and 1995 respectively) as ebooks. Both of which went on to receive levels of new-found acclaim that only confirmed Scotts new-found popularity around the world.

Fortunately, it is already very easy to freely dip into Scott Hastie’s poetic writing. Samples from his whole back catalogue of poetry are readily available at his highly visual and popular new web site, which freely displays samples of both his already published and latest unpublished work.

As a writer, Scott is very open and likes to encourage maximum participation and feedback from his readers. His web site offers the chance to post comments, both on individual pieces or more generally… The site encourages more general dialogue about writing and Scott offers mentoring services to other creative writers/students around the world.

Scott is also passionate about visiting and learning from other cultures and his web site offers the bonus of featuring many fascinating photos; glimpses from his extensive travels around the world.

Official website:

Official Instagram account: scottie131313

Official Twitter account: @scotthastiepoet

Official Tumblr account:

Public Facebook



The very business of poetry itself – One poet’s view from the UK


Hi Scott, do please tell us how you go about writing, how you organise your day?

“I am fortunate to have a smallish study all to myself, up in the loft, which looks out over open fields and a tree-lined skyline. Here I have quiet, cocooned space overlooking the English countryside (almost in the clouds…) and absolutely everything I need. Far, far away from anything else – phones, computers, tablets and door bells, especially…

For me, as a full time writer, a fairly rigorous, almost monastic daily routine is very important and underpins all my efforts. Not just in creating an exterior environment that is conducive to a concentrated and undisturbed focus on my craft – but one that also allows important preparatory time of an almost religious nature – given the spiritual themes that run through my work.

On a normal day, this would involve around two hours of advance preparation: morning exercise (normally running in the countryside and/or rowing) followed by breathing exercises, body stretches and meditation, sometimes some music also – before even beginning to think about any writing…

Having also eaten simply, I then would normally write in silence for between two to four hours – losing any sense of time, till my body tells me it is time to refuel. Immediately after lunch, I would then have a shorter 1-2 hour session (often the most exciting time of the day when earlier writing can begin to coalesce) Evenings are then usually important down-time from what is a quite an intense and tiring process. However I would still normally have a couple of short sessions early, right after my evening meal and also last thing before bed – which are more about reviewing existing work and quick, little polishing sessions – looking afresh and anew at whatever has emerged that day.

For me, it’s very important that every day (whether a writing day or not) begins and ends with me quietly reading through my last half a dozen pieces – in order hopefully to stay ‘in the flow’ and ‘in the voice’, clinging on tightly to that ‘silken thread’ that, once it slips from your grasp, can often be so hard to regain! Unless I’m away travelling or have specific social commitments, then EVERY day is a writing day.

I also have three identical and rather wonderful little digital voice recorders that literally go everywhere with me (one stays by the bed) so that, whatever I’m up to, I have some chance of capturing all those amazing little thoughts and insights that come to you, just out the blue – And as if by magic! These I call my ‘fragments’ and they usually come when you are in the throws of just doing something else, entirely – or just surfacing from sleep, for example. Rather than just sitting down somewhat deliberately: ‘to write some poetry! ’Previously so, so many of these fragments would have just got lost in the ether forever, before I started to adopt this method and built it into my daily resources and routine.

How on earth does a poem begin to emerge on a blank screen or piece of paper?

Yes indeed, beyond the general details of my day to day creative practice, I am often asked to describe exactly how I go about creating an individual poem. Firstly I have to say, in my view, you should never ever sit down to compose on a blank piece of paper – that, I think, is a big mistake many make. Furthermore, which really surprises many of my readers, neither do I ever start with a preconceived theme to write about.

Instead, I simply begin with some of these fragments, as described above, stored on a page; importantly with the most recent at the top… (as I calculate these should be the best reflection of your most current sub-conscious interests) and then see what begins to happen. Which stir you? Which begin to link together? (as per William Burroughs celebrated ‘cut out’ technique) and which prompt you to write on, some more?

And then usually, for me at least (given the immediately preceding minutes I have already invested in meditating and  ‘getting in the voice’) something soon starts to take shape and I simply go with the flow and follow its lead… And of course, once the guts of a theme is out and has been safely captured on the page – then it is always possible (and often wise!) to have a break – knowing its detail and narrative is safe and can always be polished later. So this is truly how the nuts and bolts of the creative process works for me, anyway.

What drives and inspires you to write?

All my life (and for reasons I can’t quite be sure of) I have always been a seeker in the spiritual sense and always very ambitious to live life to the full. Whenever I am blessed with special moments or insights in my life, then my first instinct is to share the light and energy that comes from this experience with others. I am particularly keen to reach younger readers and students, still at a formative time in their lives and am always especially gratified when this group of readers, in particular, is touched by my work.

I suppose, at the core of my creative effort, is an attempt to try and present and illuminate a runway ahead, if you like… Fed directly by my own being and experience – in the hope that it resonates. My personal mode of doing this is, of course, as an artist and as a poet in particular.

Who are your greatest influences?

Beyond my own personal experience of living my life as fully as possible, I have always also been uplifted and inspired by reading other writers. After all, what greater gift and truer pleasure can there be that the opportunity to read and absorb, to have an internal dialogue yourself with some of the greatest minds and souls that have ever lived? Especially in antiquity, just think how exciting it is to be able to get to know the ancient, elemental voices in Beowulf, the colours of Ovid, the technical wizardry of Flaubert, the vision of Blake, the wisdom and majesty of Gibran or Rilke, for example.

My passion for poetry was ignited, as an impressionable adolescent, by schoolboy studies of the great English Romantic poets in particular – Wordsworth, Keats and, for me, Coleridge in particular. The work of William Blake and some of the truly great French writers like Rimbaud, Verlaine  and Baudelaire were also a great influence. Shakespeare was of course the most glowing and effortless example of someone who had truly found their own voice and, in all likelihood, could write as fast as he could speak… As a student, I was both inspired and awestruck by that – to the extent it seemed like my lifetime’s challenge was going to be the long journey to begin to find my very own true voice.

How difficult was it to get started?

I soon began writing my own poetry in earnest at college, where I was studying to be a librarian and where I was also then editor of the student magazine for Brighton Polytechnic and Sussex University. Quite quickly I became one of many quite active, but relatively obscure either young small press or self-published poets. However, my work always seemed to sell well and was, at the time, unusual for always being published profitably. Thereby becoming a useful second income supporting the family life of a chartered librarian – in the auspicious tradition of a Larkin! Though in my case, the career was in public, rather than academic libraries.

What do you think were the key developments in your literary career?

Significant published collections of my poetry didn’t really appear till I had a family of my own and was already in my thirties. This was largely on the back of commercial success in other genres – when I was fortunate to author a series of quite lavish and lucrative illustrated local history books. Around this time, I also wrote Reunion, a fast-paced romantic thriller, which remains my only novel to date.

Nowadays I write full time, focusing as squarely as possible on poetry once more. A newer transitional collection of my work Meditations was first published in 2013, focusing more on the philosophic and spiritual themes, with another similar but more substantial and comprehensive collection: Angel Voices soon following in the Autumn of 2014. Along with these and my novel, two other earlier collections of my poetry remain in print today: Selected Poetry, a hardback edition and New Poetry, a later title published in paperback only. On account of growing interest, both theses titles now only very recently re-issued as e books in early 2021.

As you will by now probably know, further titles and new collections soon followed – threads in 2016 and then Pranic Poetry in 2020, the theme of which was fuelled by what I learnt and managed to absorb from a couple of years highly insightful study of Pranic Healing, under the auspices of the Institute of Pranic Healing here in the UK. By this time, there was much broader interest and appreciation of my work around the world, energised by an exponential growth of visits to my showcase website – which now generates millions of hits every year from all around the world. Interest in my work continues to grow exponentially, I think significantly encouraged but the pandemic induced lockdown around the world, which encouraged so many more folk to do two vital things – Read more… and also Re-evaluate their potential and what their life was really about… which of course lies at the very heart of what my poetry speaks to.  This was the reason which prompted us to bring forward by a year my two 30th career anniversary retrospective ‘Best Of” collections – Timeless: the best of Scott Hastie’s poetry 1990-2020 and it’s companion volume Splinters of Light: quotations from the poetry of Scott Hastie in 2020.

Sounds like the internet has played a big part in your success?

Yes your right. Initially social media was a pretty new departure for me and something I was, to be honest, something I was initially rather reluctant about – but still very much initially encouraged to get involved with by the people at Raygun who designed and launched here in the UK in 2012. In addition, I had also always been so conscious of all the other potential pitfalls there are out there for anyone seeking to write anything significant – be it the lure of fame or fortune, or the seduction of style over substance, for example. And, as always stressed by David Lidgate, my spiritual mentor here in the UK, particularly the importance of not wasting valuable energies on promotion and ‘staying in the bubble’ – if truly serious about maximising the potential you have as a writer.

Having said this, I am glad I did listen to Raygun and we have since developed approaches that make this work for me, without literally taking more than a hour or so of my time every day… Even from my limited experience to date.  Like it or not, there can be no doubt that options like Twitter Facebook & Instagram (for general public) and LinkedIn (for peer group connections) are immensely powerful engines of efficient sharing and global communication, helping to steer people from all round the world to my web site. The web site itself which has a built in blog – for both general comment and also on individual poems – has also exceeded all expectations since it was launched.  And all this from a standing start and with no marketing spend to speak of!

There is no doubt that the use of social media and also involvement with writing groups has played its part here. Although my books have long since found their way to most countries around the world, for me, as a writer, the key transformative effect here has been, for the first time, getting my work out much more effectively to a worldwide audience. And, of course, the surprises that come from this. For example, the scale of enthusiastic positive interest, now evident from the US in particular and also from India and some Arab states initially caught us off guard, to be honest. But is obviously very welcome, nevertheless.

So in summary, I am now a definite convert! Just twenty years ago, it simply would have not been possible at all for me to even dream of reaching the audience I do now, without huge investment from a major corporate publishing house. So it does literally transform everything. What I now say to those that ask is that: in this new world, I have two principal endeavours: Firstly – to write as well as I can, then Secondly – to be as serious and cooperative as I can be about getting my work to be read by as many people as possible. Hence, for example, my investment of time in contributing to blogs, as well as online art & literary print journals, both as a way of conveying an understanding of what I am aiming to do AND equally importantly sharing with and encouraging others – which I also find to be very satisfying and rewarding.

Though, much as the Internet does such a brilliant job for us, as writers and creative artists generally (in terms of being able to reach out and find a worldwide audience so cost effectively and without being totally reliant on the big and often greedy corporates) we all still know that the delicious feeling of having that intimate ‘one to one’ dialogue with the mind of another, by holding a beautifully finished printed book in your hand, just cannot be bettered or ever replaced. As validated by the simple fact that today there are more books being written and commercially published than ever before. End of any possible argument about all that there, methinks!

What excites you most about what you have achieved so far and what are you still looking to achieve with your writing?

For me, the most exciting development in my writing (in addition to the more cogent and mature voice I seem to have been blessed with, past two years or so…) is the way my poetry now seems to be truly reaching out and touching people across all social, cultural, political and faith boundaries. Much more than all the money in the world! I honestly just couldn’t want for more than that.

In that sense I’m now Living the Dream… And it therefore has become very important to me that I pay back all the blessings I’ve been given, by writing as well as I possibly can  – And that, in truth, is what the rest of my creative life is about, really.

What do you consider to be the central themes and characteristics of your poetry?

On the technical front, I have always been ardent in my belief that, as far as possible, a poem should speak entirely for itself. Perhaps more so than any other art form, surely this has to be truest for poetry? Whose principal aim is to distil an experience or insight down to the absolute essence. To my mind the voice of the piece should therefore always be much stronger and clearer than any artist’s commentary or critic’s voice could ever provide.

I regard the over-arching theme of my work to be a personal investigation into the positive potential of the human spirit. This I think is clearly evident, running through most of my poems. Not that I believe my work can ever be said to be some sweet pastoral panacea, because it never shies away from pain or suffering – and is prepared to also explore the darkness, as well as the light and, crucially, the fundamental significance of their inter reaction. This being, to me, the absolute axis (the truly dynamic and crucial interdependence of the light and dark, of joy and sorrow, of love and loss, in the grand Romantic tradition) and that key notion of duality which I hope still lies solidly at the heart of my work and my approach.

I remain determined always to be challenging enough to try and reach deep into the core of the meaning of the human experience – although I do readily accept that, as my work has developed and I have grown older, my voice has also become more reflective and spiritual in its emphasis.

I have always aimed, at any time in my career, to be as simply expressed and as readily accessible as possible – For me, this is a vital component of all my work to date. And it is here that you can also hopefully see how simple often short line length structures also play their part – though still carefully shaped for emphasis, controlled rhythm and musicality that lifts key passages, enhances meaning and always looks to carefully and lyrically draw the reader towards the concluding climax of any piece. The success of which for me is always a critical consideration and the key litmus test of success of any particular poem.

How do you define what is poetry and what is not?

A very common question… Many people from different cultures often talk to me around notions of: ‘What is poetry?’ And indeed the significance, or otherwise, of traditionally rhyming schemes and syllabic metrical structures. For me, it is very stark and straightforward– ‘a poem’ is ‘a poem’ if it calls itself one – similarly ‘a poet’ is ‘a poet’ if he/she deems to call themselves one. No more complicated than that, I’m afraid. This doesn’t mean, of course, that any self-declared poet is necessarily a viable or good one – Hey! Ho!

Similar to the old days and all the discussion about what was then ‘art’ and not ‘art’ – painters and sculptors (musicians even) I think have been much more successful than poets in throwing off the shackles of the past, in my view. Both, in terms of the general public’s and even (sad to say!) most of the established ‘literary world’ and academia’s on-going perception on this issue.

That is not to say poetry that rhymes, or strictly follows a consistent metrical rule throughout is not of value – Obviously! Just as clearly as say Jackson Pollock or Rothko’s work does not trump Michelangelo’s. Without a doubt, some of the most inspiring and effective poetry ever written falls firmly into this more traditional category.

So there you go! I am a poet, unabashed, pure and simple! And  if pressed (often tediously on the subject…) I will concede – Yes, I indeed  write mainly what is often described as ‘free’ or ‘blank’ verse. Writing that’s not (being a child of the glorious Sixties and Seventies!) also without some ‘concrete’ influences, as I mention later.

However lyrical flow and emphasis are always essential to my work, as discussed earlier and I am not averse (excuse the pun!) to using rhyme or slipping into conventional structures, whenever they feel right. Sometimes, I even find myself writing haikus, mid-poem, without even being conscious I’m doing it! No surprise there really – as some of the deepest, most ancient of structures are precisely that: felt, rather than abstractly and mathematically constructed… Stretching back to an oral story telling tradition – when such effects were first discovered instinctively for enhancing dramatic effects and aiding memory, given that nothing was then written down – but simply retold, from generation to generation.

That being said, I always have one regular tactic up my sleeve to settle any argument, if necessary, regarding my credentials and credeibility as a ‘poet’. I ask the person concerned to read any poem of mine they wish and then promptly present them with a full prose essay conveying the very same message as the poem – Trust me, that is guaranteed to shut up even the sternest of sceptics, who all of sudden have no option but to concede there is clearly much  ‘poetry’ there after all!

And, of course, overriding all this – Of one thing I have always been sure –  Poetry is the purest of all art forms. Now, within that, we know all too well how the term ‘blank verse’ can be used in a pejorative way – where as ‘free verse’ self-evidently cannot. So a poet writing ‘free verse’ is what I proudly and ultimately lay claim to be. And writing free verse that will joyfully adopt whatever technique, structure pattern or lyrical tone (in and out, however traditional… however not…) as I see fit. And as I determine the mood, the nuance, the meaning of the piece demands.

And how truly blessed I feel given that, so clearly, poetry is the highest of all art forms and stands up there, entirely on its own level. And furthermore, doubly blessed! For, to be honest, during much of my earlier life, I could so easily can have been seduced away. For example, there have been so many times in my life when, if the devil himself had offered me the chance to be a say a singer, lyricist or wonderfully visually expressive painter, then I would have literally pulled his arm off, there and then!

Because these are of course the more immediately attractive and fashionable art forms that, in our current culture especially, can so much more easily grab the world’s attention and still go on to establish some kind of meaningful and soulful relevance. However, inevitably within them, the message has at least to be in part compromised, diluted by the medium. Whereas, for the poet, the message can come through strong and pure and can be delivered in full – Direct and Undiluted. So, although we often have a harder road to travel for sure, blessed indeed are the poets!

How do you know how good you are as a poet?

Ah Ha! Thank you for your bravery here … This is certainly the 24 carat question that so many hide away from… So, you’ll have to forgive me here! This is going to be a long answer, because this whole area is a very tricky business, I’m afraid and one I find myself counselling many about precisely this key question: “Well just how good is my poetry then?’ AND for that matter: ” How good is yours?” And how do I possibly come to know the answer to this, to become more accurately, comfortably and usefully self- aware about this degree of individual assessment.

Of course, the common mistake we all make so regularly (despite how much self-confidence we all may sometimes lack…) is to imagine that something we’ve just written is very good or brilliant! Caught as we still are in that moment… When, if we calmed down for a bit, we would all know full well it is unlikely to be so… After all, it is very difficult and relentlessly demanding to write poetry to a very high standard.

If it was that easy, everyone would be doing it!

How do we begin to manage this process better then? All I can tell you, in terms of my own creative practice this is how I operate. Even on those rare and glorious days when it seems like a few lines are flowing direct from the angels themselves! That piece will still be put way and be constantly re-assessed over a period of three months or so, and certainly never EVER released or published for a full six months after it was written.

This way I can be much surer of what I do. Like distilling liquor, the time I take allows me to be so… Also I find it very cleverly protects you (much as in the same way as never starting with a blank page) from any notion you may be drying up or having writers block. Because at any one time you have at least six months work up your sleeve, ready to unleash… Given that during that time at least half of the pieces will be deemed to have not made the cut and are confined to the bin anyway! The one and only exception I make to this rule is with my long-term spiritual and creative mentor, David Lidgate, with whom I regularly meet once a month to review these few weeks of both living and fresh writing.

So I now hear you say, that’s all very well, Scott. I may well avoid many potential mistakes this way, but how do I still know how good I am?? The hard truth is you yourself will never know – but only get a brief sweet glimpse of from the reactions of other souls to your work.

After all, these days it’s certainly not hard to get your work out there on social media, various forums, blogs and even a website of your own – which I myself very much favour. And, if after some early persistence in getting noticed, your work starts to pull in responses that tell you your work is touching, illuminating others, then there’s your answer! Despite however harsh any literary or academic critic may subsequently choose to be about your work.

The trick is, as I often say when I write back to those that admire my own work, these heartfelt responses are truly so, so precious because they literally power you on further to reach ever higher in what you do. And this, of course, on a worldwide basis these days, is only the tip of the iceberg! For example, just consider yourself for a moment and let’s say your favourite actor of all time is Al Pacino, how many of you will actually take the time to write and tell him so? Not very many, I suggest, only ever a tiny handful in ever hundred or even tens of thousands! I would say.

So, if and when you are feeling a little insecure about the value of ultimate quality of your work, do please stop to consider that. For everyone who takes the time to say your work is great and important to them, there are literally hundreds, thousands of others out there, that think just the same! But simply don’t have the time and/or energy to tell you so. And many of them are often too shy, nervous and unassuming anyway to find it easy to express themselves, as they would love to. So never forget that too, especially when you get to meet them – which, with the exercise of some sensitivity and compassion, can often be the most emotionally touching moments of all

And, at the end of the day you need to be clear what is it you are after anyway?? Is it potentially corrosive constant attention, fame, wealth and always being told how marvellous you are? Or something of much more fundamental importance than that?

Fortunately, ever since I’ve been a young man and that light bulb moment at Raphael’s tomb, I have always been clear about this. Ultimately my ambition definitely doesn’t directly relate to that often temporary and over-puffed artifice, that can be found all too easily in the all the too often superficial early Twenty First Century culture.

Rather it belongs far more squarely to the question: “Is whatever I am giving , creating and sharing here of sufficient substance to be living on in the hearts of others, long after I’ve gone?”

For me anyway, that stab at glorious eternity, however far off and hopeless it sometimes seems, is the true test and the true mission.. And every time I come across a quote from one of my poems that has been discovered, published and celebrated by someone, somewhere in the world, that I have never met or even reached out to personally, then I allow myself to think I might just be getting there!

A long answer I know, but an important one, I think … And I can only hope that my candour here on this subject, as best as I can make it, is of some help to you and others struggling with this conundrum.

Your passion for what you do is very evident, what has challenged you most?

The first thing to say is that is no easy road to travel, rather a very demanding one, requiring persistent and dedicated effort over a good number of years. Going back to my youth, the first person to truly believe in me and what I had to offer beyond my lifelong friend, the precociously knowledgeable and ultimately ambitious painter, Ian Stirling was an idealistic young teacher called Robert Peel, who was my A level (higher grade) tutor of French Literature at Secondary (High) School. He was the first to open my eyes as to what might be possible and who (pretty uniquely and significantly at that time, when I was at my most rebellious and errant) still encouraged me to be myself and follow my dream. Consequently, I am forever in his debt…

Beyond that, I have worked hard most of my life to deliberately avoid being schooled by academic influences and laboured, mainly alone – albeit with the bright lanterns of what, for me, are key timeless and luminous voices like those of Gibran, Blake and Rilke to guide me on my way.

As we have already touched on briefly above – in terms of how technically I approach the challenging business of structuring of my work – then the Haiku tradition, with emphasis on focusing down and distilling the essence of what you want to say has had an on-going (if often not always directly and technically applied) obvious influence on my work. Personally, I will also always be permanently indebted for the technical breakthroughs achieved the pioneering Scottish Concrete poets, Ian Hamilton Finlay and Edwin Morgan – which really helped me see a clear way forward for myself, in terms of beginning to develop a style I feel is my own.

Is it really possible for any poet to really have his voice properly heard in the 21st century?

Like to think I am living proof that it can be done! That said, whatever anyone’s influences and any environment they find themselves operating in, I freely acknowledge that the most significant challenge faced by any writer is to truly find their own voice. And to be honest with you, I do get very weary of what sometimes seems like the endless procession of often technically, as well as intellectually talented young writers – on both sides of the Pond, simply schooled to echo the styles and mores of whatever is judged to then be fashionable by a self-serving established literary elite. To some extent, this is inevitable, I suppose… And it is perhaps unreasonable for me to imagine otherwise! But then again, as we have discussed earlier, I believe the power of the internet has played a very valuable role here in loosening this stifling stranglehold.

Also, as mentioned earlier, my tendency anyway has always been to be a bit of a lone wolf, by artistic and spiritual necessity. Thereby I believe giving yourself the time and space to conjure up a strong and unique voice that can really punch through.

I have noticed that nearly all your poems don’t have titles, why is that?

Yes, I do have a few such idiosyncrasies as a poet: And one of these is that, unless dedicated to a particular individual or location, I have never believed in giving titles to my poems. In the spirit of the haiku and my earlier answers about technique, what I say to those who question me as to why this is (and my answer often surprises or sometimes annoys many) Namely: ‘if you can truly conjure a meaningful title for a poem, then, my friend, perhaps that should be the poem itself!!’ And, for me, the first few words of a poem and page number will always serve as a sufficient identifier – so who needs titles anyway!

My other significant idiosyncrasy is that, despite the fact that I have the utmost respect for the practice of being a ‘performance poet’ – this is something I NEVER do – despite what it costs me in terms of the loss of promotional opportunities. In common with my practice of not using titles for my work, this also surprises some. But what I say to this is that I myself have always written so deliberately to be ‘read in the head’ rather than declaimed. All I can say here is that, for me as a poet, this is much more important and multi-dimensional opportunity and moreover, a preciously unique and timely dialogue between you and any individual reader, all of whom are different characters, with different histories, preoccupations and issues.

For example, would I trust anyone? (myself included!) to do full justice to one of my poems in oral recital – frankly not! Also would I really want to interfere at all with the very special music any one person could make (in their very own way and with the singular benefit of their unique experiences and resonances) with one of my pieces in their own head – Again, not really! Indeed some of my readers do tell me that they read my poetry aloud to themselves, quite often.  And that, of course, is just marvellous! And exactly how it should be…

Given all the success you’ve had to date Scott, what still drives you on to keep writing?

As to my ultimate ambition as a writer, it is certainly not, nor ever has been Fame and Fortune… (which we all know is much more easily garnered in today’s world by being pretty much anything other than a poet!) Rather, it’s always been all about something very different and much more enduring.

Something that I blessedly first became aware of so early in my life, via both my communion with my close friend, the unique, truly exceptional Ian Stirling and also the illuminating effect of a charmed  incident that took place on an early journey to Italy, as described in the Foreword/Introduction to both Timeless and Splinters:

“For me, there was only ever one true ambition in life. From that charmed moment in the Pantheon in Rome, watching on as a beautifully elegant young woman walked reverentially across the marble floor of this extraordinary historic building to place a single red rose of the tomb of the painter Raphael. There and then, an insight immediately crystallized around a noble purpose for my life. Ever more certain now that my task was now leave behind something true and beautiful, fashioned from my own life’s experience that might have some chance of touching, moving and inspiring others, many, many years later. Surely, as an eager and idealistic young man, that was all I could ever hope for. And so, the die was cast!”

A wonderful story…

What are you reading at the moment?

Currently, I would recommend the stunning and very contemporary work of NY poet Sharon Olds, one time winner of the T.S. Eliot Poetry Prize and also the poignant work of Irish poet Dennis O’Driscoll. I am also currently re-reading Marcus Aurelius and Rumi – Timeless wisdom that never fails to prompt and inspire. Additionally, I am rather addicted to rather a lot of exotic travelling round the world, spending time with and tasting other cultures – which also never fails to nourish my soul – As does spending truly precious time with my family, close friends and young grandchildren who do so much to rejuvenate my spirits, by showing me the world, as it is – fresh and new again.”

Thank you Scott for your time today and being so generous with your thoughts.

A very fascinating interview.



Syndicated interview Ó Scott Hastie 2021.


  1. Dear Scott Hastie,
    Your love of the classics is evident in all of your work, and the philosophical nature of your writing reflects your love of many cultures. Your life is a fascinating study, Scott, and I wish you all the best and continued success in all of your creative endeavors!

  2. Laura Bailey

    Dear Scott,
    Thank you for sharing your history , influences and information about your writing environment. You are in a wonderful place and your writing reflects this beautiful vision of life. Cheers to you from across the sea !

  3. Thank you,dear Scott,for sharing such excellent interview with us!I enjoyed reading it very much.Good Luck!

  4. Aria Ligi

    Thank you for your lovely words and sharing how you work, what inspires you and your vision as a poet. There is much to ponder here and much to take in. Well said, and thank you for all you do!


  5. Bonnie Gail Carter

    Your poetry is amazing. Best wishes for you to have continued success in life and your writing,

  6. Scott, this interview is wonderfully representative of your passion for poetry, a passion we both share. Your champion of and for this literary journey, on your own terms, is most admirable and inspiring.

    Your gift is a treasure Scott, for yourself and equally for your readers as well. There is nothing quite as deeply personal, profound and gratifying as the visceral response of a reader touched by our words.

    Godspeed in your journey as it continues to unfold Scott. Your voice resonates deeply through your heart, mind and soul. Your wordcraft takes us on an undeniably rich, soulful and inspired journey of our own. No other medium has that strength, that resilience, that connection with its reader.

    Embrace your gift for all your days…as we, your reading audience, embrace, through your words, that you do indeed speak to our souls.

  7. Scott,

    Thanks for sharing this interview. Wonderful insights and inspiration!
    Cheers, V

  8. Scott,

    Thank you for letting me share your latest piece which I found so
    Inspirational you are a gifted poet.

    The insight into your daily life routine is fascinating.

    In fact I have my own little office somewhat similar to what you describe, I have a mini gym in my other bedroom.

    I’m going to try your routine for more inspiration!

    Thank you again

    Brian R Walker


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *