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Maui Resident Appointed Next US Poet Laureate

W.S. Merwin, who was appointed the next US poet laureate today, couldn’t get any less Washington. The 82-year-old Zen Buddhist lives in a rainforest in Hawaii, where he spends much of his time nurturing endangered plants.

Merwin’s poems, which he still composes in longhand, are spare, unpunctuated, and ethereal. Often limning the immutability of nature and the deficiencies of human language, they owe more to Asian and Latin American poets, many of whose work Merwin has translated, than to Beltway favorites such as Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Robert Frost…

More Here: New Poet Laureate’s Unusual Washington Roots