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Congrats, Grads!

Just a quick shoutout to our graduating class of 2023–we know you’re going on to great things as writers!

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Study Creative Nonfiction at QC MFA

The Queens College MFA Program in Creative Writing & Literary Translation is opening again for applications in creative nonfiction between April 5th and May 5th.

Don Hamerman Photos

Located in the most culturally and linguistically diverse county in the nation, the Queens College MFA program attracts students dedicated to crossing boundaries in genre, craft, and language. Queens College offers tracks in poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and literary translation. Students exercise a role in building their writing community through residencies at the Louis Armstrong House Museum and the program’s national literary journal, Armstrong Literary.

Queens College also partners with Cave Canem, Hanging Loose Press, Kundiman, and the college’s ESL program. Teaching opportunities and scholarships are available.

All students study multiple genres and work with award-winning faculty dedicated to their success. In addition to a curricular commitment to excellence in craft, the program emphasizes professional opportunities for students in publishing, arts organizations, and education.

To apply, go to or click here.
Please submit your writing sample to

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Nicole Cooley in Plume

Our own Nicole Cooley has three poems in this issue of Plume–go check them out!

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A Reading by Brian Turner – 4/19

The Queens College MFA Program is so happy to announce the upcoming reading by poet and memoirist Brian Turner, on April 19, 7pm, in the Godwin-Ternbach Museum. The reading will be followed by a conversation facilitated by MFA poetry alum Jasper Lo, as well as a reception and book signing.

Brian Turner is an award-winning writer and US Army veteran and his reading is timed to coincide with not only National Poetry Month but also the twentieth anniversary of the war in Iraq. It promises to be an amazing event!

We hope to see you there!

Please note: guests to QC will be required to show proof of vaccination and ID to enter campus



Brian Turner is a poet and memoirist who served seven years in the US Army. He is the author of two poetry collections—Phantom Noise and Here, Bullet—which won the 2005 Beatrice Hawley Award, the New York Times “Editor’s Choice” selection, the 2006 PEN Center USA “Best in the West” award, the 2007 Poets Prize, and others.

In addition to his poetry, he is the editor of the anthology The Kiss (2018), a diverse anthology of essays, stories, poems, and graphic memoirs. Turner’s work has been published in National Geographic, The New York Times, Poetry Daily, Harper’s Magazine, and other fine journals. Turner has been awarded a United States Artists Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Fellowship, a Lannan Foundation Fellowship, and more. His recent memoir, My Life as a Foreign Country, has been called “achingly, disturbingly, shockingly beautiful.”

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A Reading and Discussion with Ellis Ging, Winner of the Loose Translation Prize

Wednesday, March 15, 2023 • 7 pm
Klapper Hall 710

Book cover for The Cells of Terror, written by Alfonso Sastre and translated by Ellis Ging published by Hanging Loose Press. It features bars of light on a black background, the bars reflect a human visage walking on an abstract black and white landscape.

Please join us for our first in-person event of the semester, as we celebrate MFA alum Ellis Ging winning the Loose Translations Prize from Hanging Loose Press! Rather than host a huge, formal reading, we wanted MFA students and members of literary community to be able to sit down with Ging and ask him about his work translating Alfonso Sastre’s Cells of Terror, so this event will take the form of an intimate salon, where Ellis will read and then engage us all in Translation Terror (and joy)!

Details about the book and the author are below. All guests from outside of the CUNY community will have to show ID and proof of vaccination at the main security gate on Kissena Blvd. before entering campus.

Hope to see you there!


The Cells of Terror, written by Alfonso Sastre and translated by Ellis Ging, consists of twenty-four stories, all very short, scientifically formulated about the cells that are the origin of terror—which is to say, about a few of the key situations that sow in the hearts of human beings the monstrous seed of terror. As told by a variety of narrators whose perspective is both unflinching and darkly humorous, these tales encompass the visceral, the metaphysical, and the political in horror.

Alfonso Sastre (1926–2021) was a Spanish author best known as a Generation of ’50 playwright, though he also wrote prose, poetry, essays, and screenplays. His work received numerous awards, including the Premio Nacional de Teatro (for La taberna fantástica) and the Premio Nacional de Literatura Dramática (for Jenofa Juncal). Sastre is also known for his leftist political activism: his opposition to the dictatorship of Francisco Franco and support of Basque independence.

Ellis Ging is a librarian and translator based in New York with a particular interest in the horror genre. He has an MFA in Literary Translation as well as an MLS from Queens College. He is winner of the 2022 Loose Translation Prize from Hanging Loose Books. 

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Kimiko Hahn on PBS NewsHour

Our own Kimiko Hahn was featured yesterday in a segment for PBS NewsHour about the power of poetry! You can check it out here:

Kimiko Hahn on PBS NewsHour

This is exactly what QC MFA brings to the table!

Congratulations Kimiko!

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Spring 2023 MFA Events

Queens College Spring 2023 Literary Events

MFA Program* and Related Activities

*Monday, February 27, 7pm

zoom link tba [open to current MFA students]

Author, editor, and Deputy Director at Poetry Society of America Brett Fletcher-Lauer speaks about their chapbook contest.

*Tues March 7, 5pm,

in person Klapper 710 [open to current mfa students]

John Weir micro-event

*Tues March 7, 8pm

zoom link tba [open to current MFA students]

New York editor visits Crystal Hana Kim’s Fiction Workshop and speaks about the editorial process.

Saturday, March 11, 8pm

in person Kupferberg Center for the Arts (tickets on KCA website; free for students)Ira Glass, Seven Things I’ve Learned: An Evening with Ira Glass

Ira Jeffrey Glass is an American public radio personality. He is the host and producer of the radio and television series This American Life and has participated in other NPR programs, including Morning Edition, All Things Considered, and Talk of the Nation.

*Wednesday, March 15, 7pm

in person Klapper 710

Hanging Loose Press launch of Ellis Ging translation of Alfonso Sastre’s book:

“The Cells of Terrorconsists of twenty-four stories, all very short, scientifically formulated, about the cells that are the origin of terror—which is to say, about a few of the key situations that sow in the hearts of human beings the monstrous seed of terror. As told by a variety of narrators whose perspective is both unflinching and darkly humorous, these tales encompass the visceral, the metaphysical, and the political in horror.”

*Thursday, April 20, 7pm

zoom link tba

MFA alum speak about life post-MFA

speakers tba

Wednesday, April 19 

details tba

Arun Venugopal, WNYC—Journalist-in-Residence at QC–speaks about audio storytelling. 

*Wednesday, April 19, 7pm 

in person Godwin Ternbach Museum, Klapper Hall

Brian Turner–poet, memoirist, and activist–reads from his latest collections of poetry that draw from travels and social projects over the last six years. Each collection is, in its own way, an expanded exploration of grief and memory on a personal and global scale. “As a war poet, [Brian Turner] sidesteps the classic distinction between romance and irony, opting instead for the surreal.” The New York Times Book Review

*Monday, April 24, 7pm

in person Rosenthal Library, Tanenbaum Room 300i

Ghostbird Press launch of Joe Gross chapbook Lest We All Get Clipped.

“A collection of poems that seek our innate divinity through both ecclesiastical and (extra)ordinary experience.”

Friday, April 28, 12–1pm

zoom (information on AAARI website)

AAARI Reads Book Club our virtual Book Club (Asian Amerian/Asian Research Institute)

The inaugural selection is Rajiv Mohabir’s Antiman: A Hybrid Memoir, described as “an experimental genre-blending exploration of the ways that race, sexuality, gender, and diasporic culture inform Mohabir’s experiences as a queer immigrant Indo-Guyanese poet.”

*Saturday in May

date, time, location tba 

LAHM event: Spring 2023 MFA resident writers read from their original work prompted by the Louis Armstrong Archives.

*Thursday, June 1, time tba

in person Godwin Ternbach Museum, Klapper Hall

Graduation Reading

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Academy of American Poets Names New Chancellors Kimiko Hahn, Ilya Kaminsky, Ed Roberson, and Patricia Smith

We are so pleased to announce that our own Kimiko Hahn has just been elected as one of the fifteen-member Board of Chancellors of the Academy of American Poets.

“All that we publish, program, and promote at the Academy of American Poets is fueled by the collective wisdom, imagination, and expertise of our Chancellors,” said Tess O’Dwyer, Chair of the Board. “It’s exhilarating to congratulate poets extraordinaire Kimiko Hahn, Ilya Kaminsky, Ed Roberson, and Patricia Smith on their election and welcome them into the leadership of the Academy.”

promotional photo of Kimiko Hahn for the Academy of American Poets

Chancellors serve six-year terms during which they consult with the organization on artistic matters, judge the organization’s largest legacy prizes for American poets, and act as ambassadors of poetry in the world at large. 

To read more about this momentous feat, please visit the Academy website:

Congratulations, Kimiko!!!

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Ariel Francisco: The New Yorker

MFA alum Ariel Francisco (Translation, 2021) has a new poem in this issue of The New Yorker!

Congratulations! So proud of you, Ariel!!!

Read “Baton Bleu” here:

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Eric Becker: Brazilian Authoritarianism (Translation)

MFA alum Eric Becker’s latest translation, of Lilia M. Schwarcz’s Brazilian Authoritarianism: Past and Present (Princeton University Press), is available now wherever books are sold. This book from Princeton University Press, digs beneath the mythos of the tolerant and peaceful Brazilian society, to reveal a more troubling truth.

It’s sure to be a fascinating read, made all the more poignant by Eric’s adept translation!