Native American writer Joy Harjo is the next U.S. Poet Laureate

The poet laureate position, maintained through the Library of Congress, comes with a beautiful office in the Jefferson Building and a modest stipend, but no official duties. Each poet is free to design the one-year position however he or she would like. One of Harjo’s first projects will involve using her new pulpit to humanize Native Americans for a country that still harbors so many misconceptions about them. “We all need humanizing,” she says, “but especially Natives because we’ve been so bound and ‘disappeared’ by images that really have nothing to do with us. That means bringing communities together to listen to poetry and to hear each other.”

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