Gregory Stenta

Artist Statement

Stenta writes:

“Poetry has always been a part of my life; it’s familiar to me.  I prefer to write about love, and aspire to say something new about the subject.  I’ve been described by a fellow UMass-Boston MFA student as a ‘love poet.’ However, I’ve also written about such topics as my friend’s self-described childhood in El Salvador, and a Minotaur who lives in the basement of a Manhattan Library.  Readers and listeners seem to respond best to my poetry that is about the human heart.

“Although my poems tend to be about love, they are rarely confessional in the sense that they give away intimate details.  Also, my poems are more as though I’m writing for myself, and what comes out must please me first.  And it doesn’t please me to straight-out confess.

“The poem featured here is a breath of fresh air for me, as it was in response to another person’s work, a painting.  Is it true that we write the same poem over and over again?  Honestly, I do my best to not do so.  When I’m tired of writing poems in a vein, I hope I find a new one, or perhaps I will keep finding new angles to the topic of human emotion?  My poems include details that may or may not have happened, and end in a places that are unexpected, just as the poem featured here.

“I enjoy writing poetry because it is an exploration of the inexplicable, an attempt to make sense of the world in a way that is not always easy.  If love always ends with one lover knocking on the door to an empty room, as I write here, so does writing consume you and make demands of you—it is the ultimate intimacy with oneself, whether you write straight confessional poetry or rather dip into the imagination as I do.  There’s always a connection with your life in art; if you don’t have an emotional connection to what you’ve written, usually the audience won’t either.”

Artist’s Work

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