From the Governer’s Office:
GOV. RITTER TO NAME NEW COLORADO POET LAUREATE ON JULY
Gov. Bill Ritter will name and introduce Colorado?s seventh poet laureate ? David Mason of Colorado Springs ? at a ceremony at the State Capitol on July 1. In addition to welcoming Mason as the state?s new poet laureate, Gov. Ritter and First Lady Jeannie Ritter will thank departing Poet Laureate Mary Crow for her many years of service and contributions to Colorado culture and arts.
WHAT: News conference introducing Colorado?s new poet laureate.
WHO: Gov. Ritter, First Lady Jeannie Ritter, incoming Poet Laureate David Mason, and departing Poet Laureate Mary Crow.
WHEN: 9:30 a.m., Thursday, July 1, 2010
WHERE: West Steps, State Capitol
Mason is currently a professor at Colorado College and he co-directs the Creative Writing program. His books of poems include The Buried Houses (winner of the Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize), The Country I Remember (winner of the Alice Fay Di Castagnola Award), and Arrivals. The Contemporary Poetry Review and the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum named his verse novel, Ludlow the best poetry book of 2007. It also won the Colorado Book Award and was featured on the PBS News Hour.
Author of a collection of essays, The Poetry of Life and the Life of Poetry, Mason has also co-edited several textbooks and anthologies, including Western Wind: An Introduction to Poetry, Rebel Angels: 25 Poets of the New Formalism, Twentieth Century American Poetry, and Twentieth Century American Poetics: Poets on the Art of Poetry. His next collection of essays, Two Minds of a Western Poet, will be published in 2011 by The University of Michigan Press in its Poets on Poetry series.
Mason will serve as an advocate for poetry, literacy and literature at 10-12 events each year, which include presenting the opening poem for the legislative session, visiting local schools, participating in Arts & Humanities Month, and reading at literary festivals.
Colorado was the second state in the nation to appoint a poet laureate. Alice Polk Hill was appointed in 1919 and served until she died in 1921. Nellie Burget Miller served 1923-1952; Margaret Clyde Robertson served 1952-1954; Milford E. Shields served 1954-1975; and Thomas Hornsby Ferril served 1979-1988. Mary Crow has served 14 years, from 1996-2010.