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Named the Colorado Poet Laureate in 2014, Joseph Hutchison has been serving his four-year term by making the rounds in Colorado advocating for poetry and literacy. With new work on the horizon, his term has been extended for an additional year by the Colorado Humanities.

“I’m grateful for the extra time to complete a couple of key projects on behalf of Colorado poets and educators,” said Hutchison. “This work continues to be enlightening and fulfilling for me and, I hope, useful to poets and educators around the state.”

Hutchison, who is the academic director for the Professional Creative Writing program at University College, has written a short play called War of the Words, premiering March 14 at the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities in support of the World War I Centennial project. The play explores the varying perspectives of the U.S. entering WWI and the involvement’s cultural and societal impact.

Another major project for Hutchison involves the Colorado Encyclopedia’s section on poetry, which entails archiving poems by Colorado poets. The archive, set to launch at the end of March, will be searchable so K-12 teachers can find poems to help liven up their curriculum.

This one-year extension of the Poet Laureate term will allow the new Governor to be part of the selection process for the next Laureate. In the meantime, Hutchison will continue visiting community schools and libraries, reading at literary festivals, working with educators, and raising the visibility of poetry around the state of Colorado.

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