Long before he was an editor of tiny poetry: macropoetics, Lucas Lysne was an artist of the first caliber, writing esoteric verse in picturesque puzzles. I asked him to feature as an artist before inviting him along as editor-in-chief based on his history of excellence in writing, having met Lucas at an event where he read from his award-winning poetry.
Please enjoy the word and images of Lucas Lysne.
Where were you born?
St. Joseph Regional Medical Center, Lewiston, Idaho, where my father still works, and my mom used to work.
What is your family life like?
I live with my mom when I’m not at school, and my brother is there half of the time. I stopped living at my dad’s from week to week in my senior year of high school, because he had put restrictions on my movement that affected my participation in Track, which was a step too far for me. I still love my dad and want to keep in contact with him, and I’m afraid that my kids will never know their grandfather, for a few different reasons. I feel like he’s probably the least understanding of my art, and I’m not sure it’s something he would like anyways. I hope he can one day. Also, I love my mother and brother too.
Do you have any pets?
Personally, I don’t have any pets that I could claim as dependents on my tax return, but I do have a lot of animals who I love and care(d) for. There’s four dogs, Daryl, Ragnar, Lucy, and Bentley, and five cats, Lexy, Luther, Pelagius (Pledge), Little Eli, and Firecracker, a turtle, Pokey, and I used to care for a hurt crow, who I called Huginn, or Crowmeo. Also, a fish named Maude. (and many passed pets whom I won’t list, as this doesn’t seem like a good time to start crying.)
What is your favorite color?
Fuck, that’s a hard one. Black, Red maybe? Why choose?
When did you begin making macros?
Macro-poems probably started about March 2016, but I’m sure I’ve been making macros for much longer than that.
What feeling are you trying to get across in your work?
I’m not sure. I think I just want the reader/viewer to feel something about it.
Are you self-taught - if so, what is your method?
Yes, as with most things. I think it’s oxymoronic to teach art. Sure there are technical skills, and I acknowledge that much, but delving oneself into that rarely produces anything worthwhile, at least exclusively from that. As far as my methodology for macros goes, I’ll give you the copypasta I use when anyone asks me that:
I use three programs: Paint / paint.net / FastStone Image Viewer. I usually use all three of these on any macro, FastStone to crop and correct, Paint to apply text, and paint.net to finish them up. This isn't always the case, but it's my usual workflow. (and they are all free programs).
Also, two things usually drive my work: sudden inspiration or rigorous structuring. I also usually try to make my macros wholly original, attempting to use photos I’ve taken, but always using my own words (as much as that is possible within the restrictions of language being a copied form etc. etc. You’ve seen that video Everything's a Remix, right?)
Who are your major poetic influences?
To be honest, I’m not hugely into poetry, as it seems that very little poetry actually holds the emotional fecundity it’s purported to, that working within verse can really kill emotion that’s supposed to be beautifully raw, obscuring feelings behind taciturn and incomprehensible phrases. That’s probably why the Beats are amongst some of my favorite poets overall, especially Allen Ginsberg. I also have a fondness for some of the classics, and The Inferno is probably one of my favorite books. When a poem gets it right, it sticks with me forever.
How does your identity impact your work?
I think dwelling on one’s personal identity is non-constructive, in much creative work. I’m autistic, so the generalization that most affects me is that I really shouldn’t be able to empathize with people. You can’t write if you can’t empathize, you can only masturbate, and while some people look good masturbating, most do not. We connect through language, and it should always attempt to be a two-way conversation.
An extra sampling of Lucas's written work, provided for this issue, can be found here:
Lucas Lysne is a person. You want to know more about him. He would prefer to know more about you. What noteworthy things have you done? What makes you special? You are important. You are singular and unique, animated with the movement of the universe. Do not waste your gift. Become the miraculous being that you are, transcend.