One more entry from Erik Deckers’ “Your Next Beach Read.”

Your Next Beach Read

What’s your name and where are you from?

Michele Battiste originally from upstate New York and a current denizen of Colorado’s Front Range.

How long have you been writing? How did you start?

25 - Michelle Battiste author photoSince 5th grade. I started with a class assignment to write a poem called “Box Marked Summer.” My poem was awful, but I didn’t realize it. So I wrote another awful poem. Then another. I wrote awful poems for years. It took me a while to figure poetry out.

Who are some of your influences?

I like to think of myself as the love child Getrude Stein and Ovid never had. When I was a baby poet, I read a lot of Samuel Ace, Maggie Estep, Sandra Cisneros, Linda Gregg, Langston Hughes, Albert Goldbarth, Anne Sexton, and Lyn Lifshin. Current poets blowing my mind are Camille Dungy, Katie Jean Shinkle, Layli Long Soldier, Camille Guthrie, Erika Meitner…

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