Poet Laureate Grew Up a Migrant Worker, Seeing Poetry All Around Him


Those are some deep landscapes of mountains and grape fields and barns and tractors; families gathering at night to have little celebrations in the mountains and aquamarine lakes way down below. So, see, all that is like living in literature every day.

Juan Felipe Herrera, who became the new US poet laureate on Tuesday, talks about growing up in a migrant family, catching fleeting poems on paper, and how he hopes poetry will open ears.

You can find Charley Locke's journalism on WIRED, tweets @CHARLEY_LOCKE, and drawings on her parents' fridge. You can also sometimes spot Charley imperiously making book recommendations while managing the McSweeney's Pop-Up Shops. More from this author →