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The GoPride.com Interview

Elliot Torres

by ChicagoPride.com

CP: Could you share a little bit about your life - where you started, how your life journey has gone, and where you are now?

Elliot: I was born and raised in Waukegan, Illinois.

I moved to New York City at the age of 17 for college and pursue my dreams.

I began writing Five Years of Solitary at that point.

It wasn’t a planned project.

I was writing poetry as a form of therapy by venting my frustrations about love, loneliness, and relationships.

I finished writing it in 1999 when I was 22 and self-published it in July of 2002.

My journey has been filled with great opportunities, interesting people, dark times and a lot of learning experiences.

Today, I attempt to stay hopeful about love but my main focus in my career.


CP: Your writings are highlighy regarded and you are looked at as a role model, especially within the youth community. If you could impart one most important piece of advice to this generation, what would it be?

Elliot: I don’t see myself as a role model.

I along with everyone am always learning and could often use advice myself.

The one thing would say to anyone younger than me would be…don’t lose yourself in a relationship.

I can’t stress that enough.

Many of us when we are younger put a great deal of energy into relationships to fulfill that lonely void.

Instead, focus on yourselves, your careers and live life to the fullest.

We need more successful people out there…not broken hearts or life placed on hold for others.

Love will come; just let it fall into place.

Focus on you first.


CP: Your book, "Five Years of Solitary," is an important literary work which has given a voice to the gay Latino community. Is there a poem you'd like to share which has the most meaning in representing the "voice?"

Elliot:

Goodbye

As he looked into my eyes

I could tell that he loved me

Kind and caring

It could be no lie

As he looked into my eyes

I felt safe and secure

He was true to me

I was sure

As he looked into my eyes

I envisioned forever

And our love could not be severed

As he looked into my eyes

I think of the love that we shared

There were others but they didn’t compare

As he looked into my eyes

I noticed he was staring at me no longer

But instead he was glaring at another

As I looked into my heart, I felt the pain and wounds

Time went by, I became stronger and he could hurt me no longer

One day he looked into my eyes

And was baffled

Hoping to be forgiven

He realized I couldn’t be driven

As he looked into my eyes

His head fell down

Sad, disappointed, and overwhelmed

By my strength, power, and determination

Between us there could be no relation

As he looked into my eyes,

I smiled and said

Goodbye.


CP: Your current book covers everything from relationships, sex and loneliness to travels, self-discovery and love. Is there a second volume in the works that we can look forward to reading?

Elliot: Yes.

My second self-published book of poetry is coming out in late August.

It is called Undaunted: A Poetic Journey

I began writing it immediately following Five Years of Solitary.

It chronicles the years between September of 1999 through early 2004. It is angry, sexual, passionate, and unapologetic.

There is a lot of variety in it stylistically and I am extremely excited for people to read it.
 
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Morgan Stanley
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