"Poetry can heal ... may your poetry help guide that river toward the hearts of the people - at this time," writes U.S. Poet Laureate and Academy of American Poets Chancellor Juan Felipe Herrera in a letter of support and comfort to South Florida Youth Poet Laureate Juanita Castro, in light of the recent tragedy in Orlando, Florida. 
His letter and the exchange with Castro is part of the Dear Poet Project. Produced by the Academy of American Poets, the project invites thousands of young people to read poems by the poets who serve on the organization's Board of Chancellors and then write letters to the poets in response. Castro wrote movingly to the U.S. poet laureate in response to his poem "All the Thoughts at a Football Game."
In her letter Castro writes: "I immigrated into a world that fought against me, and made me feel afraid of my own language and my culture. I too, moved from nation to nation, trailer to tent, just as much a migrant as you ... Your poetry made me love the idea of being a hybrid, both as a person and as a poet."

read their exchange