Juan Felipe Herrera Is Next U.S. Poet Laureate

June 10, 2015

The Library of Congress today named Juan Felipe Herrera, professor emeritus of creative writing at the University of California at Riverside, the next U.S. poet laureate. Herrera is the author of 28 books of poetry, novels for young adults and collections for children. In a statement, James H. Billington, the librarian of Congress, said, “I see in Herrera’s poems the work of an American original -- work that takes the sublimity and largesse of 'Leaves of Grass' and expands upon it. His poems engage in a serious sense of play -- in language and in image -- that I feel gives them enduring power. I see how they champion voices and traditions and histories, as well as a cultural perspective, which is a vital part of our larger American identity.”

Herrera will be the first Latino to hold the position of poet laureate.

His two most recent collections of poems, both published by the University of Arizona Press, are Senegal Taxi and Half of the World in Light.

The Library of Congress released this guide to his work. Herrera's CV may be found here.

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