Ada Limón, professor at Queens University, named American Poet Laureate

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Ada Limonprofessor of fine arts and creative writing at Queens University in Charlotte, was officially named the 24th Poet Laureate tuesday.

Limón, 46, will be a poetry consultant for the Library of Congress — a position that has existed since 1937. His job will be to inspire an appreciation for reading and writing poetry, the Library of Congress said in a press release.

Ada Limon at LOC.jpg
Photo by Shawn Miller/Library of Congress. Note: Privacy and publicity rights for persons depicted may apply. Shawn Miller Library of Congress

She found out about her hiring after receiving an invitation for a “mysterious Zoom call” on June 1, Limón told the Lexington (Kentucky) Herald-Leader. On that call, Carla Hayden, the Librarian of Congress, greeted her at the station.

“I was completely at a loss for words,” Limón told the Herald-Leader. “It wasn’t on my radar. My first thought was, ‘Oh, are you sure? Have you found the right person? I was a bit speechless and also – I don’t mean in denial, but I had a hard time accepting it because it all seemed so surreal.

Although she has been teaching in the Queens MFA program since 2014, Limón has lived in Lexington for over 10 years.

Among Limón’s “specific tasks” will be initiating poetry projects, reading his work at the Coolidge Auditorium in Washington, and opening the literary season on Sept. 29 before closing it in the spring, according to the release. .

Limón, in the statement, called his appointment “an incredible honor.”

“Over and over again I have witnessed the immense power of poetry to reconnect us to the world, to allow us to heal, to love, to mourn, to remind ourselves of the full spectrum of human emotions,” said Limón in the press release.

Ada Limon.jpg
Photo by Shawn Miller/Library of Congress. Note: Privacy and publicity rights for persons depicted may apply. Shawn Miller Library of Congress

silt, a originally from Sonoma, California, is the author of six books of poetry, including “The Carrying,” which won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry; and “Bright Dead Things” (2015), a finalist for the National Book Award and the National Books Critics Circle Award.

Hayden, the Librarian of Congress, said Limón’s “accessible and engaging poems ground us in where we are and who we share our world with.”

“Ada Limón is a poet who connects,” she said in the statement. “They speak of intimate truths, of living beauty and sorrow, in a way that helps us move on.”

Limón recently released his latest collection of poetry, “The Hurting Kind”, and currently hosts “SlowdownAmerican Public Media podcast series.

She will be in the company of a long line of distinguished poets who have held the position, including Joy Harjo who served three terms in this position from 2019-22, Juan Felipe Herrera, Charles Wright, Natasha Trethewey, Philip Levine, WS Merwin, Kay Ryan, Charles Simic, Donald Hall, Ted Kooser, Louise Glück, Billy Collins, Stanley Kunitz, Robert Pinsky, Robert Hass and Rita Dove.

This story was originally published July 13, 2022 11:21 a.m.

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Jonathan Limehouse is a breaking news reporter and covers all the major happenings in the Charlotte area. He covered a litany of other beats from public safety, education, public health and sports. He is a proud graduate of UNC Charlotte and a native of Raleigh.


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