Prove your humanity

Often science and spirituality are thought to exist in two separate vacuums––the flipside of the coin. However, poet Jackson, like many great physicists, artists and theorists before her, is bringing these ideas into harmony with poetry, attempting to apprehend her own consciousness and give others the space to do the same.

Her book, A coat of ashes, is a 98-page artistic interpretation of Jackson’s interest in the parallels present in our universe.

“Having published two books already I thought I would take the art of my poetry to its limit,” she says.

As part of her PHD, Jackson studied Daoism (aka Taoism) in great depth. She began noticing trends between the scientific and the spiritual.

Daoism is many things, it’s the way things in nature flow together to create change, return and renewal. It’s also the universe and our consciousness.

Author Fritjof Capra described it in his book The Tao of Physics (esteemed in the Daoist community), as the idea that our consciousness––and the way we look at things––affects them and brings them into existence. It is the creation of being from nothingness.

Through her studying, reading and own spiritual travelling, Jackson recognised where new sciences such as the systems, complexity, and chaos theories were attempting to comprehend nature in ways relating to this ancient philosophy.

When compiling A coat of ashes it was a way for her to understand her own position and thoughts.

“My book is an attempt to bring [science and spirituality] side by side in art so people can maybe apprehend their own consciousness,” she says.

“But it’s also for me to grapple with the quarrel in my own head.”

According to Jackson her poetry follows Daoism in which it is a recurring theme throughout.

“I try to write unpretentiously, not just in this book, but all my poetry,” she says.

“If I’m going to use a word, I’ll use it because that’s what that poem needs, not for anything else, this comes back to Daoism––doing what is necessary and nothing more.

“I’m trying to move away from the perspective of the privileged observer and instead make poetry that is accessible.”

With a love for language, Jackson has been living in a city bordering inner Mongolia in China.

Yin Chuan is where she will be when her book is launched today, with a 10 minute snippet of recorded poetry readings being sent digitally in her absence.

Jackson insists her poetry, once written, belongs to everyone and should be able to be read by anyone.

“My vision for my poetry is for it to be literary art and so appreciated by the literary types, but also accessible for the woman or man in the street,” she says.

“I think if humanity is going to grow and stop destroying things, we have to bring together different ways of perceiving, and our different systems of thought.

“Making my art accessible is a way of starting these conversations.”

‘A coat of ashes’ poetry event is today Saturday May 2 at The Moon Café from 2pm to 5pm.