April 2, 2017
Rigoberto Gonzalez, March 31
Gonzalez’s prepared talk was titled “The Apocalyptic Clapback” in which he stressed the importance of poetry/art & politics, not just now in the immediate political situation, but in all times as a way to move our culture forward. He said a number of his works have been banned, including his memoir Butterfly Boy: Memories of a Chicano Mariposa & the children’s book Antonio’s Card, even one of his poems (in Maryland) which he read here in Albany.
He also read the moving, chant-like poem “In the Valley of Missing Sons” from his collection Unpeopled Eden (2013), winner of the Lambda Literary Award, then on to a climate-themed love story “Alfonso” from the chapbook Our Lady of the Crossword (2015). He ended with a longer story/memoir about picking grapes as a young migrant worker with his father, grand-father & cousin.
One of the great assets for the community at large here in the Capital Region, & for the literary arts community in particular, is the NYS Writers Institute. Visit their website for more information (& to support their ongoing work).