Grievances, a chapbook by Roberto Montes
"My name is Roberto Montes," begins Grievances, "And I am BACK." Such self-conscious references are part of Roberto's resistance in this highly anticipated poetry chapbook. Part of merging with any community is merging too with the failures of community—and Roberto Montes is a poet of conviction and accountability, aware of artifice the way he is also aware of his presence in the New York Poetry world. All of these things bleed. Through careful elucidations, we are offered the many apertures through which Roberto Montes can—and must—become himself. Roberto reminds us that we are stuck spinning in a wheel of our own making, even when we revolt against the spinning of that wheel. To revolt is to acknowledge this machine is still there waiting for us to boycott. As his lyrics urge us through these trappings, there is comfort in identifying the cog—as such an effort as naming our futility is one way to configure a new way to survive. He writes in "They Held Me Harmless,"
From the wreck they pulled
A survivor who would not
Say she was saved
One imagines a sort of relief
It is customary to place a hand
On the door you do not wish opened
Do you find yourself
These expressions only begin our grief as we follow the antmill all the way to the procession. To read Grievances is to shiver alongside a poet who reminds us it has been a long time since we have been ourselves. And we must shiver.
His language eventually swarms us as it does on the cover, created by Emily Raw (www.emilyraw.com) using Roberto's words from the book. Like a sick country, the legibility becomes illegible with overabundance—and it is only through naming such a frenzy that we might finally grieve. It just so happens that in naming this fit of text, it comes as a chapbook dressed in rose gold foil and is very, very pretty.
Preorder your copy today and receive free shipping! Believe me, you will want a copy of this limited edition chapbook.