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Inaugural Poet Richard Blanco to Read at Penn State

There are many traditions and rituals associated with the United States presidential inauguration. One of the more sporadic fixtures is the inaugural poet and presidential poetry reading. Robert Frost served as the first inaugural poet in 1961 when John F. Kennedy took office, and several presidents have commissioned poets to recite a piece of their work at inaugurations several times since.

Author Richard Blanco served as President Barack Obama’s inaugural poet for his second term, reciting his poem “One Today” on January 21, 2013, in front of a reported 700,000 people.

As part of Penn State Creative Writing’s Mary E. Rolling reading series, Blanco will visit Penn State on October 10 and read some of work at 7:30 p.m. in the Paterno Library’s Foster Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.

Richard Blanco stands as the youngest, first Latino, first immigrant, and first openly gay person to serve as the Presidential inaugural poet. He has written three books, countless poems, and is a Paterson Poetry Prize recipient.

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About the Author

Kevin Horne

Kevin Horne was the editor of Onward State from 2012-2014 and currently holds the position of Managing Editor Emeritus, which is a fake title he made up. He graduated from Penn State with degrees journalism and political science in 2014 and is currently seeking his J.D. at the Penn State Dickinson School of Law. A third generation Penn Stater from Williamsport, Pa., Kevin is also the president of the graduate student government. Email: [email protected]


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