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“Poetry is a country” will bring celebrated poets from across the nation together to premiere original poetry inspired by works in the National Gallery of Art’s collection. These free, annual events will take place on Saturday, September 23, and will open with a keynote address by Ada Limón, the 24th US Poet Laureate, who was reappointed for a historic two-year second term earlier this year.
The participating poets—Jason Reynolds, Naomi Shihab Nye, Ilya Kaminsky, Jorie Graham, Heid E. Erdrich, Teri Ellen Cross Davis, Victoria Chang, and Hanif Abdurraqib—will perform their new works both in East Building galleries by the works of art that inspired them and in our East Building Auditorium. Readings will occur between 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Only those in the East Building Auditorium require registration, and all works discussed there are also on view in the galleries.
A parallel series of interactive, drop-in activities will be offered in the East Building galleries, open to all ages and interests throughout the day. Programs will include 20-minute poetry-writing workshops and poetry-inspired artmaking led by local artists and educators; haiku customized by typewriter poets drawing upon visitor discoveries and observations; and a poetry exhibition in our library.