Monica McClure

Interview

An Interview with Monica McClure 

by Paul Florez

I first met Monica McClure back in 2013 in Greenwich Village when I was an MFA candidate at The New School. We were introduced by a mutual friend, and we spent the evening sipping red wine, discussing poetry, and contemplating the value of an MFA. Her chapbook Mood Swing had just published and I drunkenly raced home to read it. Spoilers, my mind was blown.

In the years that have followed, Monica has become a dear friend and her book Tender Data, published in 2015, has lines that still haunt me till this day: “I want to be so skinny people ask if I’m dying.”

When I envision Monica in my head, I see a bespectacled nomad navigating an apocalyptic tundra full of static televisions, outlet malls and Starbucks—her writing has the uncanny ability of awakening hopeless consumers from their iPhones and pumpkin spice lattes. She is unyielding with her convictions, and fearless when discussing mental health, family, and fashion.

Described as “the poster girl for a new generation of poets,” by NPR’s Craig Teicher, I recently sat down with Monica to discuss her upcoming chapbook from GRAMMA, writing poetry in a post-Trump world, and which iconic literary figure she would selfie with.

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