Washington

In 2007, Washington established a state poet laureate position, which is currently held by Claudia Castro Luna who was appointed to a two-year term in 2018. Luna is the author of Killing Marias (Two Sylvias Press, 2017) and the chapbook This City (Floating Bridge Press, 2016). 

In 2019, Chris Cook was named poet laureate of Spokane, Washington. Cook will serve a two-year term.

In 2019, Jourdan Imani Keith was named poet laureate of Seattle, Washington. Keith will serve a two-year term.
 

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Washington poet laureaute
Claudia Castro Luna

Claudia Castro Luna was born in El Salvador. She received a BA in Anthropology from the University of California, Irvine, an MA in Urban Planning from the University of California, Los Angeles, and an MFA in poetry from Mills College. She is the author of Killing Marías (Two Sylvias Press, 2017) and the chapbook This City (Floating Bridge Press, 2016). In 2019, Castro Luna was named an Academy of American Poets Laureate Fellow. She currently teaches at Seattle University and serves as the poet laureate of Washington State. 

Claudia Castro Luna

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Lunar Eclipse

Mt. Rainier National Park

We are standing on the access road to Paradise.
Seven miles from the gates.  We are standing
on the centerline, the moon on our faces, the mountain
at our backs. 
Were it less than full, we might see,
in its northwest sector, the Land of Snow
and the Ocean of Storms.  Because it is full, we can see,
just over our shoulders, how the Ramparts climb up
toward the glaciers.
  We might see near the Sea
of Showers, the dark-floored crater of Plato.
How the glaciers, just over our shoulders—
Pyramid, Kautz, Nisqually—shine.  How the spreading
bedrock shines.
  As if we are starting again,
we have placed—there—on the moon’s widening shadow
Kepler, Copernicus, Archimedes, Aristoteles.
And opened a Sea of Fertility.  A Sea of Nectar.
As if we imagine     a harvest.
No sound it seems, on the slopes, in the firs.
Nothing hoots.  Nothing calves.  Although
through Nisqually’s steep moraine, rocks
must be shifting, grasses cinching their eternal grip.

Look, in the blackness, how the moon’s rim glows,
like a ring from an ancient astrolabe. 
We are standing in the roadway.  There is nothing
on our faces but the glow of refracted dust. 
At our backs, the mountain is shifting, aligning itself
with the passing hours.
  First ice. Then stone.
Then the ice-green grasses.  We are standing
on the centerline
     aligning ourselves with the earth.
We are standing on the access road    as if we imagine
an eternal grip.  Look—they are rotating on, now.
Already a pale crescent spreads
past the Known Sea     and the Muir Snowfields—
as if we are starting…—past
the Trail of Shadows,
the ice-green grasses,
the seas of nectar, the craters of rest,
the gardens of     nothing but passing hours.