“I PUT PEN TO PAPER, AND A RIVER OF BLOOD POURED FROM ME.” – MEET SIANA BANGURA

“I was putting ‘Elephant’ together long before I even realised. The oldest poem in there is called ‘The Stranger,’ which I wrote in 2013 after a difficult encounter with someone from my former life. That encounter caused me a lot of pain – the type of pain I did not know how to verbalise and process. It was a destructive pain, so I countered it by creating something. I put pen to paper, and a river of blood poured from me. I wrote and performed it, and I felt better. So rather than inspiration, this book was born from the need to feel better. I had and still have a lot on my mind, in my chest, in my bones, and I needed to put some of it out into the world because through starting and continuing difficult conversations, we can begin the long journey to finding answers. I wanted to address the elephant in the room and explore difficult and very personal subjects candidly from migration to domestic violence, racism, love, death, fatherlessness, hostile cities, gentrification, and existing as the ‘Other’. The 37 poems that make up ‘Elephant’ take the reader on a journey. The personal is indeed political.”

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Read the full interview with Ic3 Mag here.

Siana Bangura

Siana Bangura is a writer, poet, performer and producer hailing from South East London. She is the author of critically acclaimed debut collection, 'Elephant', a book of poetry meditating on Black British womanhood and life growing up in London and the founder and former editor of No Fly on the WALL. Siana is the producer of '1500 & Counting', a documentary film investigating deaths in custody in the UK. With experience in indie publishing, journalism, and campaigns under her belt, Siana’s wide portfolio of work focuses on bringing voices on the margins to the centre. To find out more about Siana's work visit: www.sianabangura.com And catch her tweeting at @Sianaarrgh