This weekend, the Portsmouth Poet Laureate Program is celebrating 20 years of building community around poetry. It's considered one of the oldest municipal laureate programs in the country that provides a stipend and support for the laureate. Each laureate launches a project that's meant to bring poetry into the community. Bill Burtis is the co-chair of the Portsmouth Poet Laureate Board of Trustees. He spoke with NHPR’s Peter Biello. How did the Portsmouth Poet Laureate Program come to be? In the 1990s, there was real fear in the community of Portsmouth that the shipyard was going to be closed. The federal government was thinking of closing it up. The effect on thousands of jobs and the whole community—there was a lot of fear about that. The Music...
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The Bookshelf: Portsmouth Poet Laureate Program Celebrates 20 Years