Heights Arts seeks next CH poet laureate

Ray McNiece performing live at Ekphrastacy: Artists Talk and Poets Respond.

Heights Arts initiated the Cleveland Heights poet laureate program more than 20 years ago. It is now seeking the city's 11th poet laureate, to serve a  two-year term, April 2023 through March 2025—Heights Arts’ 25th anniversary. The Cleveland Heights poet laureate receives a yearly stipend, participates in civic and community events, and manages Heights Arts’ popular Ekphrastacy—Artists Talk and Poets Respond series.

Heights Arts is accepting applications for the position through Dec. 31. Anyone applying for the laureateship must commit to serve the full 24-month term of service if selected, and be either a resident of Cleveland Heights or have a significant relationship to the Cleveland Heights community. 

Detailed information, along with the application. can be found at heightsarts.org/poet-laureate/.

The Cleveland Heights Poet Laureateship is the first and longest-running laureateship in the state of Ohio. With the endorsement of the city of Cleveland Heights, Heights Arts established the post in 2000, to celebrate and elevate poetry as an art form for the benefit of the community’s residents.

Every two years, the organization’s Heights Writes Community Team selects a poet to serve in this post. The team is made up of volunteers with expertise in the literary arts, supported by Heights Arts staff. 

Current Cleveland Heights Poet Laureate Ray McNiece, one of 22 poets laureate in the country, was recently awarded a fellowship through the Academy of American Poets thanks to his laureateship at Heights Arts.

Commenting on his experience as the 10th CH poet laureate, McNiece said, “Serving as the Cleveland Heights Poet Laureate has provided me with the opportunity not only to refocus on my poetry, but more so on my role as a community poet. Writing is often a solitary art, but the laureateship by its very nature engages my art, particularly through the Ekphrastacy series, which provides me and other poets in the community with an opportunity to work with a wider audience.” 

Tom Masaveg

Tom Masaveg is a public artist specializing in augmented reality installation and graphite works on paper. He's also the programs manager at Heights Arts. Contact him at programs@heightsarts.org.

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Volume 15, Issue 12, Posted 1:38 PM, 11.15.2022