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JAKI SHELTON GREEN – North Carolina’s Poet Laureate

Jaki Shelton Green is the first African American and third woman to be appointed as the North Carolina Poet Laureate. When he appointed her in 2018, Governor Cooper stated that “Jaki Shelton Green brings a deep appreciation of our state’s diverse communities to her role as an ambassador of North Carolina literature. Jaki’s appointment is a wonderful new chapter in North Carolina’s rich literary history.” FOR MORE

Jaki Shelton Green, North Carolina’s current Poet Laureate (and the first African-American to hold this title), has given us a deeply moving and powerful gift for her 67th birthday, which is Juneteenth (the anniversary of the emancipation of the last remaining enslaved African-Americans). There’s a musical quality to these spoken poems that is mesmerizing and deeply beautiful — yet “The River Speaks of Thirst” is so much more than that. FOR MORE 

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