U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón To Visit National Parks For Poetry Project

Ada Limón is the nation’s 24th U.S. Poet Laureate/Shawn Miller, Library of Congress

Seven national parks will host special events this year with Ada Limón, the nation’s 24th  Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry.

Limon’s “You Are Here: Poetry in Parks” initiative will feature site-specific poetry installations will transform picnic tables into works of public art featuring an American poem with a meaningful connection to the park. While in the parks to unveil the picnic tables, Limón will also engage with local youth, tribes and/or community groups.

“`You Are Here: Poetry in the Parks’ aims to deepen our connection to nature through poetry,” Limón said in a news release. “I believe the way we respond to this crucial moment on our planet could define humanity forever. In conceiving of my signature  project, I wanted something that could both praise our sacred and natural wonders and also speak the complex  truths  of this urgent time. Above all, this project is about rising to this moment with hope, the kind of hope that will echo outwards for years to come.”

The dates and locations for the poetry celebrations and table unveilings are:

Saguaro National Park in Tucson is one of seven national parks where U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón will visit and create poetry installations.

Saguaro National Park in Tucson is one of seven national parks where U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón will visit and create poetry installations/Jennifer Bain

The featured poets and poems include:

  • Mary Oliver, “Can You Imagine?” at Cape Cod. 
  • Jean Valentine, “The valley” at Cuyahoga Valley.
  • June Jordan, “Ecology” at Everglades. 
  • Lucille Clifton, “the earth is a living thing” at Great Smoky Mountains. 
  • A.R. Ammons, “Uppermost” at Mount Rainier.
  • Francisco X. Alarcón, “Never Alone” at Redwood. 
  • Ofelia Zepeda, “Na:nko Ma:s Cewagi/Cloud Song” at Saguaro.

“Generations of artists have been inspired by the landscape of national parks,” National Park Service Director Chuck Sams said. “We are honored that Ada Limón is continuing that long tradition through her signature project which encourages everyone, especially youth, to reflect on the meanings and values of nature.”

The project — presented in partnership with the Library of Congress and the Poetry Society of America — includes an invitation for public participation. The NPS and Limón hope people of all ages — poets and non-poets — will feel moved to write their own responses to the You Are Here prompt of what would you write in response to the landscape around you? People have the option to share their  responses on social media using the hashtag #YouAreHerePoetry.

Limón was appointed as the 24th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress on July 12, 2022, and was reappointed for a historic two-year second term on Apr. 24, 2023. Limón’s second term will conclude in April 2025.

Shopping cart