Menswear Mondays: Poet Kirkland James

The new year is here, and new menswear is emerging on the Denver streets. This week's stylish male, Kirkland James, is a local artist and poet who looks optimistically towards the future. Continue reading to discover who inspires his style, what his resolution is for 2013, and how he plans to change the world with his art.

See also: -Menswear on the Denver streets: BOYLONDON necklaces and blue suede shoes -What's in your bag? Rock-inspired menswear and more! -Photos: On the men's fashion runway of the 2012 American Crew Face Off

Name: Kirkland James.

Profession: Artist, painter, singer and poet.

Spotted: Outside of the Central Denver Public Library.

Favorite film: Equilibrium and The Guardian.

2013 resolution: Be more in touch with my spiritual side, and be more thoughtful to be a better person. I kept it broad because throughout the year you realize that one specific goal is never enough to continue to better yourself and improve.

Style inspirations/icons: Every person I come across, because you learn a lot from every person you take the time to interact with. I take a lot away from those experiences.

Favorite color: Yellow, orange and red.

Favorite accessory: My cell phone. I love the dual camera on it. Jackets, shoes, belts and sunglassess are my favorite fashion accessories, though. If I have a nice pair of shades, I'm set.

Style mantra: Every morning I tell myself that I'm going to accomplish what I set out to do that day, whatever that may be. And I say it out loud or I reaffirm it to my friends so they can get on me if I don't do it.

Shops at: Burlington Coat Factory for pants, American Apparel and Urban Outfitters for jackets.

Kirkland James is not to be confused with Captain James T. Kirk from Star Trek; the signature Costco brand, Kirkland; the local Kirkland Museum; and especially not boxer James Kirkland. Kirkland James is a painter who uses acrylics and reads poetry on Sundays at the Mercury Cafe. Check out his enlightening YouTube video, which captures "Our World, Our House," a piece in which he shares his views on global unity.

Go to page 2 to find out what Kirkland James keeps in his bag!

James had not one but two bags with him the day we spotted him, as well as several coats. Inside his black messenger bag and backpack he had a blanket, a change of clothes, hygienic products, paper and pens. "What makes me who I am and what I'm interested in is that everything in the world has its place, even the bad things," he says. "In that perspective, even the bad things are good because they enrich all the good experiences. This allows me to enjoy the small things in life."

Style analysis: As we usher in 2013 along with hopes of a better community, Kirkland James projects a fun image to all the individuals he encounters -- from the subtle pops of color in his pink T-shirt to his yellow tennis shoes. We also found him rocking a cream-colored beanie and scarf that goes well with his neutral layered look, and also adds warmth. But James isn't so focused on his own look that he doesn't notice others: During our interview, he even complimented me on my sunglasses, demonstrating both compassion and kindness.

Always strive to better yourself and those around you -- and look good doing it, Denver.

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Mauricio Octavio Rocha graduated from Metropolitan State University of Denver in 2014 with a bachelor's degree in English writing and a minor in cinema studies; He has been writing about fashion and style for Westword since 2012. Rocha also writes songs for his music and art project, VULGAR FEVER.
Contact: Mauricio Rocha