CITY OF SANTA BARBARA POET LAUREATE

About the poet laureate program:

The City of Santa Barbara Poet Laureate Program was established in 2005 to inspire and remind the local community of the power and beauty of poetry and the spoken word. the santa barbara public library serves as the home of the poet laureate and a partner in promoting and producing poetry in our community.

in April of 2019, Laure-Anne Bosselaar was selected as the Poet Laureate to lead, inspire, and encourage poetry and creativity in the Santa Barbara community.

The Poet Laureate is a local resident and distinguished poet tasked with seeking to advance awareness of and appreciation for literary arts and humanities within the greater Santa Barbara community. The Poet Laureate represents and celebrates the diversity and history of Santa Barbara as well as being a spokesperson for the City’s literary community, the Poet Laureate shall endeavor to promote the artistic achievements of the City of Santa Barbara and shall actively participate in ceremonial, educational, and cultural activities in the community at various times throughout their term of service.

About Laure-Anne Bosselaar:

Laure-Anne Bosselaar grew up in Belgium and then moved to the United States in 1987. She is the author of The Hour Between Dog and Wolf, Small Gods of Grief, winner of the Isabella Gardner Prize for Poetry, and A New Hunger which was selected as a Notable Book by the American Library Association. She is a nationally recognized poet and has been reviewed in The Washington Post, Georgia Review, Ploughshares, AGNI, Askew, Miramar, and many others. She has edited a number of anthologies like Night Out: Poems about Hotels, Motels, Restaurants and Bars, Outsiders: Poems about Rebels, Exiles, and Renegades, Urban Nature: Poems about Wildlife in the Cities, and Never Before: Poems about First Experiences. She has also taught at a number of colleges and conferences including Emerson College, Sarah Lawrence College, UCSB, The Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA, and the Palm Beach Poetry Festival in Florida.

Click below to listen to Laure-Anne Bosselaar read one of her poems from her latest book, These Many Rooms, which came out from Four Way Books in 2019.

The next Poet Laureate will be selected in April of 2021.

The Santa Barbara Public Library serves as the home of the Poet Laureate Program and a major partner in the stewardship of this program, as well as hosting the Santa Barbara Poetry Series. Learn more about the library's events supporting the series and the literary arts as well as other artistic disciplines here.

Laure-Anne_01_color.jpg

Laure-Anne Bosselaar

Poet Laureate 2019-2021

Current Poet Laureate

2019-2021 | Laure-Anne Bosseslaar

Past Poets Laureate

2017-2019 | Enid Osborn

2015-2017 | Sojourner Kincaid Rolle

2013-2015 | Chryss Yost

2011-2013 | Paul Willis

2009-2011 | David Starkey

2007-2009 | Perie Longo

2005-2007 | Barry Spacks

In July 2018, three of our Past Poets Laureate traveled to Ireland! Learn more about their adventure.

Image by David Bazemore  Left to right: Sojourner Kincaid Rolle, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Enid Osborn, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate (current); Perie Longo, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Chryss Yost, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Tracy K. Smith, United States Poet Laureate (current); David Starkey, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Paul Willis, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate and Phil Taggart, Ventura County Poet Laureate (current).

Image by David Bazemore

Left to right: Sojourner Kincaid Rolle, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Enid Osborn, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate (current); Perie Longo, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Chryss Yost, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Tracy K. Smith, United States Poet Laureate (current); David Starkey, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate; Paul Willis, Santa Barbara Poet Laureate and Phil Taggart, Ventura County Poet Laureate (current).