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Q&A with class instructor Roberto Montes

Our free writing classes program continues this Saturday with Roberto Montes's "How to Commune with Ghosts." In this class, students will explore how to access the supernatural way in which great poems seem to take on a life of their own. You will learn practical techniques to encourage this communion using hands-on exercises, prompts, and contemporary examples. We hope to see you at 2:30 p.m. at the Ridgewood branch of Queens Library.

Below, Roberto tells us a little about himself and his work.

What’s your connection to Queens?

I was born in Jamaica, Queens and spent the first years of my life there. In my early twenties I returned to Jamaica (as many creatures instinctually return to the place of their birth) and then later lived in Astoria. I cannot deny the impact Queens has had on me: its diversity of people, culture, and language has left its mark indelibly on my work.

What can students in your class expect?

The class will explore and engage with methods to coax the unexpected from the aether and into our poetry. We will read from a variety of poets about jumpstarting the creative process including CA Conrad, Carmen Giménez Smith, Jack Spicer, and Charles Bernstein as well as participate in writing exercises to put their thoughts into practice.

What current projects are you working on? What is your latest publication?

A new chapbook, entitled Grievances, is now available from The Atlas Review. Beyond that, I am working on putting the finishing touches on my second full-length manuscript.

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