Richmond seeks applicants for inaugural youth poet laureate

Richmond seeks applicants for inaugural youth poet laureate
National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman recites her poem "The Hill We Climb" at President Biden’s Inauguration. (Getty Images)

By Kathy Chouteau

Fresh off National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman’s paradigm-shifting poem “The Hill We Climb” at President Biden’s Inauguration, Richmond is seeking its own inaugural youth poet laureate.

Richmond’s RYSE Center, powered by a grant from the City of Richmond, is calling for young Richmond poets between the ages of 13-18 to apply to become the city’s first-ever youth poet laureate at a time when youth poetry not only echoes the spirit of the times, but also embodies it.

Applications are due by Tues., Feb. 16, 2021 at 11:59 p.m.

Richmond’s youth poet laureate will serve a one-year term that will kick off this month and run through January 2022. According to RYSE, the youth poet laureate will receive a $2,000 stipend, mentoring from RYSE’s Cici Jevae and will partner with the city’s adult poet laureate toward carrying out the various duties associated with the role.

To be eligible, Richmond youth between the ages of 13-18 should be from Richmond or attend a Richmond school (or a local college); must be able to attend virtual events and meet weekly; and should submit three original poems, no more than ten total pages.

To apply, click here to complete the application, and separately, submit three poems to [email protected]. Applicants should not include their name in the submission of their poems since preliminary judging is anonymous. Questions? Contact Cici at her aforementioned email. Learn more about RYSE here.