State Poet Matt Mason Has a Tip for Breaking the Ice With Audiences About Poetry | Latest news

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“I Have a Poem the Size of the Moon,” the latest collection of poems from Nebraska state poet Matt Mason, features poems primarily about Nebraska. Reviewer Joaquín Zihuatanejo writes of the book: “Matt’s portrayal of Nebraska is steadfast; As you go through the poems, you wonder what was in this place before the Walmart was built? “


Matt Mason, courtesy


By RICK BROWN, Yard Light Media

LINCOLN – State poet Matt Mason often lets his official title carry a little more weight.

“One thing I learned is that when I do presentations for Kindergarten to Grade 3 classes, it’s a lot easier when I come in as a ‘state poet’,” did he declare. “It’s a tough crowd. But when I am introduced, they have a lot of questions. It is much easier with the title of State Poet. It’s like, ‘Ooo, you’re the state poet. You are something. You have a title.

Before becoming the State’s Poet Laureate, Mason would appear in front of a class, read a few poems, and then answer questions from young students on topics such as rabbits.

“Now with the title they’re actually asking about poetry – then rabbits,” he said. “It’s much better.”

Mason assumed the role of Nebraska State Poet in 2019. His term ends in 2024. In addition to his official duties as an advocate for poetry, literacy, and literature in Nebraska, Mason also writes of creative way. His latest book, “I Have A Poem The Size Of The Moon,” published in November by Stephen F. Austin University Press, contains poems about his country of origin.

“These are mostly poems about Nebraska – with a little bit of space, but I think it’s related to Nebraska as well,” he said. “A lot of it is in the towns, but it also goes in the small towns and the Sandhills.”


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