Poet Laureati: A National Convergence of State Poets, Featuring Two of Goddard’s Faculty

Two of Goddard’s faculty are state poets laureate — W.E. Butts, who teaches in the Individualized BA, is poet laureate of New Hampshire, and Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, who teaches in the Individualized MA, is poet laureate of Kansas. Now the two will be meeting in Kansas as part of a national convergence of poets laureate Mirriam-Goldberg is organizing with other Midwestern poets laureate.

The gathering March 13-14 in Lawrence, Kansas, includes readings, an auction to have dinner with a poet laureate, museum tours of the world-renowned Spencer Arts Museum with a poet laureate, and an all-day conference featuring panels on poetry as it relates to healing, the land, spirituality, publishing, making a living and the process of writing; and all-star readings.”When we started organizing this, I thought maybe we’d pull in ten or so poets, and I’m blown away that we have 20 coming,” Mirriam-Goldberg said. “Most are coming on their own dime because of their belief in the power of poetry, community and what can happen when we all come together.”

What will happen when they all come together? “We’re not completely sure, but I know the conversations will be fascinating, the poetry will be overflowing, and we’ll probably do a good combination of lamenting the loss of arts funding in our states and telling stories that make us fall over laughing.

The other poets coming include former U.S. poet laureate Ted Kooser, plus Marilyn L. Taylor (WI), Peggy Shumaker (AK), Karla Morton (TX), Walter Bargen (MO), Mary Swander (IA), Sue Brennan Walker (AL), Bruce Dethlefsen (WI), Lisa Starr (RI), Denise Low (KS), Norbert Krapf (IN), Marjory Wentworth (SC), Mary Crow (CO), David Romtvedt (WY), David Evans (SD), Jonathan Holden (KS), Joyce Brinkman (IN) and Carolyn Kreiter-Foronda (VA). This event is also the book launch for An Endless Skyway: Poetry from the State Poets Laureate of America (Ice Cube Books).

Registration rates are very reasonable (beginning at $65 for the all-day conference), and ample accommodations are available in the area. For full information, please see www.UnitedPoetsLaureate.wordpress.com.

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