There are not many Creative Writing students that I have met who tell me that poetry is one of their creative passions; however, Rene Masur did say this to me, and with complete honesty. Her sincerity, I could even say, is palpable. Masur, a fourth-year Creative Writing student, says that her academic career began with a focus on fiction, but it gradually shifted to poetry, “with dabbling in publication and editing, because you’ve got to be able to do that in the real world.”
Masur began writing poetry the summer she was 10 or 11 years-old. She says, “I would sit at the computer, and the computer was actually right by the door, so I would have the door open and the cool air would just be coming in, and I could see our yard and the grass and the trees, and I would just write. I would write a full poem, and they were all about nature. I think I called the poems ‘Ocean,’ ‘Moon,’ and ‘Sun.'” She says that at that time, poetry was about rhyme and metre. One of those poems was published when Masur was 12 in an anthology called Fireworks and Shooting Stars.
Nowadays, Masur’s poetry is usually from the point of view of a young woman. “She’s myself, but she’s someone else. She’s my friends, my mother. She is my family. She is everything pulled into this woman in all these different scenarios.” Most of Masur’s poetry takes place on Vancouver Island and is inspired by nature, the ocean, and the forests.
But Masur says that she is also a sucker for love. “I always have been. And so that always plays a part in my poetry. Either the longing, or the wishing, or the heartbreak, or the gaining that and then the euphoria of it. But it’s always present in my work because that’s my life, so it’s in my poetry.” This theme works its way into all of Masur’s writing, whether it be poetry, fiction, or non-fiction. “I love people. I love relationships. I love the drama between them. I love what can be discovered in a conversation with someone without knowing where it’s beginning or where it will end, but just that dialogue, the back and forth, it’s two souls speaking to one another.”
Masur has had her work published in two anthologies, both in 2009. The first was in a collection of short stories titled Kissed in a Boat, published by Arts Angel Publishing, and the second was in a collection of short stories and poems, called Out of the Warm Land, published by Ten Old Books. She has also had works of fiction, non-fiction, and poetry published in the last three issues of Portal, VIU’s literary magazine.
Though Masur celebrates these accomplishments and certainly hopes to see more of her poetry, fiction, and non-fiction in print in the future, she has, for the most part, been focussing on finishing her degree. This includesan internship with a Vancouver web-based company called Sokanu, which is designed to help people find their passion and purpose in life. Masur has been working as a content and blog writer for the website, a position that carried on well past the agreed upon end date, and she is excited because her dedication has paid off. She has been offered a job for the summer and is now in the process of renting a place in Vancouver. She says that she will be back in the fall to finish her degree and to graduate with the people she has gone to school with over the last four years.