In this VOZ Women feature, we caught up with Austen Leah Rosenfeld, a prolific poet and honorary Voz model. Her poems have graced the pages of the Antioch Review, the Salmagundi Magazine and the Indiana Review, to name a few. Her work can also be seen published on Style.com. So what is her life like beneath the pen and pad? She shares how her home inspired her along with the moment that she realized poetry was her passion.
Where is home for you? How did it shape you?
Los Angeles. I think it made me find certain landscapes beautiful, deserts and freeways, that aren’t usually considered beautiful.
When did you know you were going to be a poet?
I always wanted to be a writer, but I took a poetry class in college and it suited me better. I’m not very good at articulating myself with words but poetry allowed me to make a new language out of my language
Here is an excerpt from one of her pieces, Palm Reader
Palm Reader published in The Indiana Review
… I miss the trains of the East, their structured narratives,
the taximeters twitching like insect wings, red reminders
of where I’ve been.
I am not what I am. All the old hotels
have fallen to their knees,
but I see one chandelier still swinging,
casting shattered light along the wall
like cave paintings, jasmine-scented ghosts of Coconut Grove.
Land of rolling hills and arrivals, of ceaseless exodus.
There is no leaving this.
Who is your muse?
I don’t have a muse. But I love songs by Dolly Parton, paintings by Johannes Vermeer, books by Joan Didion.
What does fashion mean to you? How would you describe your own personal style?
Fashion is a source of anxiety for me which is why I’m fascinated by it. My style has a bit of a western feel and a menswear influence.
Photography by Arturo Stanig.