Poet Hera Lindsay Bird: ‘I forget about the sex in my book until I read it aloud’

New Zealand’s outspoken ‘Instapoet’ star discusses sentimentality, sitcoms – and why humour is essential to her work

Acclaimed by the poet laureate, Carol Ann Duffy, as “the most arresting and original new young poet”, 30-year-old Hera Lindsay Bird is one of the stars of the new generation of “Instapoets” – so called because of their use of social media – with hits including Keats Is Dead So Fuck Me from Behind and Monica, which riffs on the character from the sitcom Friends. She works in a bookshop in New Zealand. Hera Lindsay Bird is her first collection. She tours the UK this month.

Why did you call your debut collection Hera Lindsay Bird?
That’s my name! I was thinking about the great female pop stars of the 90s, when it was compulsory to name your first solo album after yourself, and if you were Janet Jackson, the second one too. ...