Skip to main content

Governor Names Dave Lucas Ohio's New Poet Laureate

Governor John R. Kasich recently announced that Dave Lucas of Cleveland Heights has been named Ohio’s poet laureate. Lucas is Ohio’s second poet laureate, the last being Dr. Amit Majmudar, and his two-year term began on January 1.

Lucas currently teaches at Case Western Reserve University. He earned his undergraduate degree in English from John Carroll University, his M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Virginia, and his Ph.D. in English Language and Literature from the University of Michigan. You can read a review of Lucas' book, Weather, here

Lucas, originally from Cleveland Heights, is excited for the opportunities that this new position presents to foster a love and appreciation for poetry across Ohio. He already has plans in the works for a multimedia poetry project, which will be announced once plans are finalized through the Ohio Arts Council.

Lucas’s interest in poetry didn’t officially begin until he was in college, but he felt drawn to language even before then.

I started writing poems seriously in college—I’d dabbled before,” said Lucas, “but years before that, I'd become aware of something compelling and mysterious in both the language of poetry and everyday language as well—in reading it, in hearing it spoken or sung. I couldn’t have put it in these words then, but I think that was the beginning of my life in poetry.”

During his time as poet laureate, Lucas hopes to connect Ohio readers from all walks of life with the many forms poetry can take. According to an Ohio Arts Council news release, Lucas "is planning a multimedia project involving people from diverse places and backgrounds allowing them to experience a variety of opinions about poetry." 

I hope to celebrate the work and legacy of Ohio poets and to celebrate poetry as we find it in ‘traditional’ poems and in unexpected places as well,” said Lucas.

Among Lucas’s many achievements are the 2012 Ohioana Book Award in Poetry for his work Weather, as well as the Cleveland Arts Prize, Emerging Artist in Literature.
His friends and family have been proud and supportive of Lucas’s newest role. “They’re already sick of hearing about it,” said Lucas. “That’s what makes them such good friends.”




By Abby Studebaker

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Casting a Line for Susan Glassmeyer's 'Invisible Fish'

by Chuck Salmons If you haven’t heard by now, OPA member and Cincinnati poet Susan Glassmeyer is the winner the Ohio Poetry Day Association’s 2018 Poet of the Year award, for her first full-length collection, Invisible Fish  (Dos Madres Press, 2018). On the heels of her winning, I corresponded with her to find out more about the collection and her writing process.  CS: First of all, congratulations on the award! Having read Invisible Fish, I know this is an honor that is well-deserved. How does it feel to have your name among past winners such as Mary Oliver, David Baker, and David Citino? SG: I was truly surprised to win this award, Chuck. I did some research after the fact and learned about the history of the award. What an honor to be part of this venerable Ohio poet lineage! I already own a few of the books on the list, not realizing the authors had previously won the award. And although I have many of Mary Oliver’s books, Twelve Moons (winner in 1980) was not among

Ohio Poetry Day Association names 2021 Poet of the Year and Contest Winners

The Ohio Poetry Day Association (OPDA) has selected Quartez Harris as its Ohio Poet of the Year for 2021. Harris was selected for his book of poems, We Made It to School Alive (Twelve Arts Press, 2020). Residing in Cleveland, Ohio, Harris is a second-grade teacher at Michael R. White Elementary School. We Made It to School Alive, his second collection of poetry, was inspired by his work as a teacher and gives voice to the experiences of the children he works with every day who deal with issues of gun violence, poverty, educational challenges, and more. Harris’ first book, N othing, But Skin,  was published in 2014 by Writing Knights Press. He is the first recipient of the Barbara Smith Writer-In-Resident at Twelve Literary Arts and a 2020 Baldwin House Fellow. He has been featured in the Plain Dealer, IdeaStream, and City Club of Cleveland, and recently signed on to be represented by Mckinnon Literary Agency. His works in progress are a young-adult novel and picture book biography. 

Ohio Poetry Day 2022 Contests Now Open!

The annual Ohio Poetry Day Association contests have been announced.  May 15, 2022, is the deadline (postmark) for more than twenty contests, including a “Welcome Aboard” category for first-time submitters and an art category to design the cover art for the 2022 Best of Ohio Poetry Day anthology, published later this year. Below is a copy of the submission form, which provides full contest information.  Ohio Poetry Day 2022 will take place in October. Stay up to date on OPD information, including the event date, location, and agenda, by getting your name and address on the OPD mailing list. To do so, contact: Amy Jo Zook 3520 State Route 56 Mechanicsburg, OH 43044 Checks for all contest fees and purchases should be made payable to: Ohio Poetry Day . For questions, call (937) 834-2666. Click and download the images below to view them at full size.