Decatur resident and Emory professor Natasha Trethewey is the new Poet Laureate of the United States.
Trethewey is the first poet laureate to hail from the south since the initial one was named by the Library of Congress in 1986.
The first poet laureate was Robert Penn Warren - an inspiration for Trethewey.
She is the author of three poetry collections, including Native Guard (2006), winner of the 2007 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry; Bellocq's Ophelia (2002) and Domestic Work (2000). Her newest collection of poems, Thrall, is forthcoming from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in 2012. Trethewey is the author of a nonfiction book, Beyond Katrina: A Meditation on the Mississippi Gulf Coast (2010).
To celebrate her accomplishment, the City of Decatur and the AJC Decatur Book Festival are giving her a toast at 5 p.m. Thursday at the gazebo on the downtown Decatur Square.
"The heart and soul of the DBF has always been the vibrant Atlanta writing community. Natasha's elevation to poet laureate is confirmation of the spectacular talent we have here," said Daren Wang, the executive director of the AJC Decatur Book Festival.
Refreshments will be provided by Eddie's Attic.
Copyright 2012 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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