Mikaela Lefrak Examines the Life of Maryland Poet Laureate, Grace Cavalieri
In a new piece for the WAMU website, Mikaela Lefrak takes a deep dive into the career and day to day of Maryland’s 10th Poet Laureate.
The beloved Grace Cavalieri “contains multitudes” according to Mikaela Lefrak in her newest article from WAMU taking a look at the life and career of the 10th Poet Laureate. And Ms. Lefrak treats her subject with the due respect of a life which cannot be covered succinctly in 500 words. She delivers a reverent tourists’ view of Grace Cavalieri’s life, hitting the big things: her poetry and work ethic, the passing of her husband, Kenneth Flynn, her conversion to Buddhism, and finally her new tenure as Poet Laureate.
The most intriguing information, and what is patently new for many of us following Grace’s plans as Laureate, comes at the end, in the last section:
“She intends to go to each of Maryland’s 23 counties this year and select a poet to give a public reading. “Everyone’s going to be invited to the party,” she said. “Everyone’s going to have better access in Maryland.”
Beyond access, she hopes her magic laureate wand will give her the power to inspire more people to take up writing. “What I love best is the people who say, ‘After talking to you, I wrote my first poem,’” she said. “I would love to have put that little chip, that little crystal behind your heart.”
You can read the full article HERE
Citations and Extras
As good as the article is, there are a few things that are glossed over and could have been better cited, so I’m citing a few things below that may serve as companions to the piece.
Ms. Lefrak mentions Grace Cavalieri’s long running radio program “The Poet and The Poem.” You can find a lot more information and a list of her interviews with US Poets Laureate HERE
Ms. Lefrak mentions Grace’s work ethic
When I asked her how on earth she’s managed to be so productive, she shrugged. “I didn’t have a choice,” Cavalieri told me during a recent conversation at WAMU. She took a sip of her tea and smiled at me. “You do it because you have to say something or you will burst.”
HERE is a link to Grace reading her wonderful poem “Work is my Secret Lover” which explains humorously and in more depth her relationship to the work part of poetry.
The late Kenneth Flynn is mentioned in the article. If you’d like to know more about Grace’s Relationship with her husband, listen to her read these two poems: “Identification” and “Safety“
And Finally, don’t forget to check out Grace Cavalieri’s Legacy Book, Other Voices, Other Lives