This article was originally published by the Albuquerque Journal.
Lauren Camp has a way with words.
The northern New Mexican poet becomes the state’s second Poet Laureate.
“I am humbled and grateful to serve as New Mexico’s second Poet Laureate,” says Camp. “I fell in love with New Mexico 28 years ago when I first entered the state, and I put down roots immediately. Thanks to New Mexico I have blossomed into my creative expression — first in visual art and then in poetry. But here I have also learned that my creative abilities grow best when I work to supply others with enthusiasm and tools to amplify theirs.”
Camp’s three-year tenure began on Sept. 7. She is the second person to have the title. Levi Romero was the inaugural Poet Laureate and wrapped up his term.
Camp is no stranger to working with the community. She has taught through the state’s Poetry Out Loud program and led various community workshops.
She also teaches for Hugo House and Hudson Valley Writers Center.
During her tenure, Camp will support literacy and enhance education, while promoting arts enrichment across the state.
Through speaking engagements statewide and programs at schools and libraries, Camp will engage all New Mexicans with poetry. She will also document her travels via web journal and podcast.
“I also want to encourage the poetic voice of New Mexico residents, especially those who don’t know that a poem can reflect their own story,” Camp says. “I welcome collaboration ideas from organizations that want to connect poetry with science, community projects, the environment, the arts, and other directions.”
Camp has published five poetry collections.
“Lauren Camp will make an exceptional State Poet Laureate. She is not only a talented poet of national renown, but a gifted teacher with exciting ideas about how to engage the people of New Mexico in the writing, reading, and overall enjoyment of poetry,” says Michelle Laflamme-Childs, executive director of New Mexico Arts. “I look forward to working with Lauren to explore how poetry can help us navigate and process challenges and facilitate our connections with each other.”