LA. STATE POET LAUREATE - Gov. John Bel Edwards named Dr. Jack Bedell Louisiana’s newest Poet Laureate in August of 2017. Dr. Bedell is a Professor of English at Southeastern Louisiana University and the author of nine books, including Call and Response (with Darrell Bourque, 2010), Come Rain, Come Shine (2006), What Passes for Love (2001), Bone-Hollow, True: New & Selected Poems (2013), Elliptic (2016), and Revenant (2016). As editor of Southeastern’s literary magazine Louisiana Literature since 1992, he has published numerous Louisiana poets. Dr. Bedell has taught creative writing to students of all ages, from the third-grade level to the graduate level over the last 30 years. Intimate and personable, his work reflects a familiarity with Louisiana life and its people. He visited with Red River Radio and explained more about what a state poet laureate does.
Dr. Bedell: "I definitely think there's a responsibility for any poet laureate whether it's city-wide or parish-wide or state-wide or even the national poet laureate, to promote writing, literacy, poetry, the arts in general, human voice, confidence--all of these things that come from poetry, that come from reading, so that there's growth in our state, in our cities, in our parishes
and in our nation, in the abilities to express oneself. And the ability to read language and the ability to read language and appreciate it as an artform. And I think the poet laureate's job is to promote all of this as well as be represent ative of it in their own work." Dr. Bedell will be presenting some of his award winning poetry at Shreveport Regional Arts Council’s ArtStation downtown, Thursday, January 11, 2018 from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m. and shining the light on Caddo Parish’s great poetry as he gives local published poets tips on how to become the Parish’s new Poet Laureate. Caddo Parish is the only parish in Louisiana that has its own Poet Laureate. The presentation is open to the public and free of charge. For more information: https://www.shrevearts.org/calendar/