Local poets ready, willing to be laureate | TheUnion.com

Local poets ready, willing to be laureate

This is Election Day, and you might think it’s a federal law that newspapers are required to write editorials encouraging their readers to get to the polls on Election Day.

But it’s not a law. You already know that your vote matters today. You don’t need The Great Media Nag Machine to deliver a load of guilt to your doorstep.

Now that we’ve handled that civic chore, let’s get on to a subject of widespread interest: Our efforts to convince the state of California to select one of our Nevada County poets to serve as the state’s poet laureate.

We used this space a couple of weeks ago to point out that California is having a devil of a time finding a poet laureate, someone to promote the values of poetry to California residents and someone who could, from time to time, produce a bit of poetry celebrating the state.

We suggested that Nevada County has no shortage of poets, and this is an opportunity for the otherwise tiny voice of Nevada County to be heard across this populous state.


We quickly learned that Nevada County includes a large number of two types of people:

1. Poets who would be more than willing – excited, even – to have the chance to promote the values of poetry and produce, from time to time, a bit of poetry celebrating the state. In fact, several of them indicated long experience with the absence of remuneration associated with poetic endeavors. Thus, they said, there would be no reason for the financially strapped state to provide any pay other than mileage and the occasional pizza and soda if they are selected.

2. Friends of poets, many of whom believe their pal would be a terrific laureate for the state. (Poets’ friends, interestingly, are much more aggressive than poets themselves about asking for money.)

In our role as stewards of the community welfare, we have gathered up resumes, samples and names and telephone numbers of the Nevada County poets who are interested in the job and forwarded them along to the state.

We, like you, will keep our fingers crossed.

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