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Minnesota Poetry

The History of poetry in Minnesota

Minnesota poetry Minnesota poetry can be traced back to 1933. Poets created a series of work, which is now known as ‘Poetry of Today’. This series was incorporated into St Paul Pioneer Press, and was founded in a bid to bring together the state’s poets into founding an organization that catered to their interests.

The following year thirty-three poets met in St Paul, they became the initial charter members of the League of Minnesota Poets. M.D. Gerry was elected the organization’s first president. By the end of 1934 the organization had a total of seventy- four members.

During that year the organization published two books. The books enlightened readers about the League and its mission. The first book by Maude Schilplin was ‘Anthology of Minnesota Verse.’ The second was by Clara Clausen, ‘Steps in Creative Poetry’.

Minnesota poetry The publication of poetry by the local talent was a step towards cultivating poetry into the people’s culture and allowed them to showcase its talent. The league also helped the budding talent and guided each new member in fine tuning their poetry.

The next year saw the organization’s membership rise to one hundred and fifty- three members at the time it held its first exhibition. The organization worked with Parent-Teacher Association groups of Minnesota and organized the first poetry contest for non-members.

The office of Librarian came into existence in 1938. The job description was to look after the League’s publications. Anthology of Minnesota Verse was also published in the same year. The organization employed a Board of Critics whose role was to constructively critique the poems written by the members at a fee.

The members of the organization met their mission statement by encouraging the education system to incorporate the state’s poetry into their syllabus. The best poets in the state were awarded by having their poetry published in specialized print media.

It is for this reason that ‘The Moccasin” was created. It enabled the League to create a medium that will portray their talents in a more permanent manner. The Moccasin was in circulation for four decades. It published information on the events organized by the organization and published poetry from the contests organized on a regular basis. The Moccasin has had a total of eleven editors, of which Meredith Cook is currently in that seat; she has held this post for the last two decades.



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