Modern poetry and spoken word has grown to become not only an elevated art but an avenue for people to also elevate themselves through expression. Our latest Flow Feature is the wonderful Hayah. A woman that is all about living her life in her own truth which we have had the privilege of witnessing on stage and now we get a deeper insight into the inspirations behind this unforgettable artist. We’re doing what we do best and discovering more about the woman behind the words that is Hayah.
Who is Hayah?
An individual of freedom, Hayah describes herself as an introverted creative that slowly emerged from her shell using poetry. She started writing in 2019 and was fairly new to the poetry community before her friends introduced her to Flo Vortex, a popular poetry event founded by the Floacist. What began as writing as a way to express herself eventually turned into her exploring the world of spoken word and taking her writings to the stage. She admits that it has been a beautiful journey becoming a part of the poetry community and has seen how more self-reflective she can be in her writings.
We’re all human, and I love being able to explore myself within this realm as well as others.Hayah
As someone that feeds off the positive energy of others, Hayah realised that writing and poetry started to reveal a new confidence in her that she didn’t necessarily have in more casual conversations. As she became more familiar with the London poetry community she found more and more safe spaces to express herself in the ways that she wanted to. Inspired by themes such as nature, corruption, and the workings of the system, each performance is like an artistic form of education that many spoken word poets have the ability to do effortlessly.
Poetry reminds me of who I am. It’s allowed me to set boundaries that protect my energy.Hayah
What is the story behind Hayah Pokes?
Body art has always been an important part of Hayah’s life. Once she decided that she wanted to be a tattoo artist herself she discovered that the tattooing industry can be very egotistical and competitive. She launched Hayah Pokes three years ago, but when she looked for guidance on how to develop her skills she was often met with rejection and negative comments from other tattoo artists which forced her to find her own lane. Inspired by ancient techniques, Hayah tattoos her clients by hand whilst also getting to know more about herself and those that she has the pleasure of working on. Hayah Pokes is more than a business to this creative, it has become a way for her to share her knowledge with others instead of harbouring it.
People always express to me when I’m working on them, and this has taught me a lot about how to deal with the emotional and physical pain of others.Hayah
Taking a step back from poetry to focus on growing Hayah Pokes, Hayah has set up a workshop to teach others the same hand poking techniques that she uses on her clients. Her tattoo workshops focus on the history of the techniques, learning about different types of skin and how to tattoo yourself before learning how to tattoo others using fake skin. She provides an intimate and unique experience for those who want to start taking tattooing to a new level.
What should we be looking out for in future?
With the success of Hayah Pokes, Hayah will be releasing a range of merchandise including hoodies and t-shirts with designs that are similar to her tattoos before the year ends. Influenced by new found perspectives in life and the process of exchanging old energy for new, the creative is back to writing more introspective pieces that we may be hearing sooner rather than later as she plans to release new work in different forms.
I’m hoping to start recording my EP and working on a new book soon.Hayah
Although nothing has been confirmed it’s safe to say that everything Hayah has coming our way will represent the incredible artist that she is. We look forward to seeing what’s next and you should look forward to her coming to a stage near you. For more information on how to book a workshop or body art with Hayah Pokes, you can reach out to Hayah via Instagram.
Creative Director & Writer: Tannika Taylor @tannikataylor
Photographer: Matty @mattys.gallery
Cover Design: Simplexity @simplexitycc