Printed Matter Vancouver is proud to present the debut chapbook from Leah Klass. Recently relocated from Portland to Ann Arbor, Michigan, Leah is a poet, community activist, global connector, and World Peace Fellow. Hers is the first book of poetry Printed Matter Vancouver has published featuring a writer who lives outside of Southwest Washington.
Order now: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09K1HRGF6/
The debut collection of poetry by Leah Klass tells stories of discovering empathy through human connection. Her work is a rallying call to value our everyday interactions with other people. Reach Out, Reach In offers concrete ideas for transforming the world into a warmer, more welcoming place.
Reach Out, Reach In
By Leah Klass
Published by Printed Vancouver
October 25, 2021
Cover Art & Design by Mercer Hanau
Edited by Toni Lumbrazo Luna and Christopher Luna
ADVANCE PRAISE FOR REACH OUT, REACH IN
How we are made is how we see, and from the rich mosaic of her background Leah Klass delivers kaleidoscopic poems that will persuade your vision to see this world made strange and precious. This book offers local beginnings, global consciousness, and the courage to use language for what it needs to do: sustain the sovereign self engaged in connecting the private life to the public world. Enter this book troubled, then emerge knowing “there is another way.” — Kim Stafford, author of Singer Come from Afar
I read Reach Out, Reach In straight through and want more. Leah Klass tells to the bone truth in bold narratives and chewable language. She is a thoroughly American woman who gathered new languages and a layered identity living in many countries. “Understand I am global,” she writes, and we do, seeing through her “inherited pattern recognition” a unifying grasp of culture and language that threads through her own evolution from childhood to maturity. These brave poems move with a strong beat, riding on a wide and inclusive heart. They illuminate so much of a woman’s experience through the stages of her life. For Klass, a fierce advocacy for all people developed, rooted in connection and kindness, and in her passion for acts big and small in families and communities that count toward healing the world. — Rae Latham
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Born in Washington, D.C., Leah’s education has included attending diverse public schools and studying abroad. She learned Spanish in the homes of her friends in Falls Church, Virginia. In high school she turned 16 on a secular kibbutz, where she worked on the assembly line in an olive factory and was chased by ostriches. She later waitressed and cleaned houses to help pay for her studies in Anthropology at the University of Virginia which included a year of study abroad in Brazil. She completed a master’s degree in International Peace and Conflict Resolution at the University of Queensland thanks to a Rotary Fellowship in Argentina and Australia.
She spent the first years of her career bringing businesses from different countries together and encouraging friendships between strangers. Market research and report writing were a ticket to long weekends in Chile and high speed taxi rides in Mexico. She has also helped get social services to migrant communities, taught students how to better network and facilitated group discussions for international business people.
Leah’s greatest pleasures are making connections and reaching out to build community. Speaking many languages allows her to communicate with more people. She speaks Spanish, Portuguese and some Hebrew and German. She is committed to valuing intergenerational relationships and amplifying kindness.
After becoming a mother, Leah experienced a great shift in her understanding of the world and felt an overwhelming desire to express her need to build community and to help others find and use their voices. In tandem, she joined a kind and passionate poetry community in Portland, Oregon. With the support of the group, poetry has become a way for her to tell stories and to activate others to go out and do something good.
Learn more at www.leahklass.com.