In celebration of National Poetry Month, Mayor Sylvester Turner is pleased to announce the new Houston Poet Laureate: Aris Kian Brown. Brown is the sixth poet laureate and the youngest to be chosen.
The selection of Aris was announced April 13, at a reception hosted by the Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs (MOCA) and the Houston Public Library (HPL) with remarks by Mayor Turner, Dr. Lawson, Dr. Irvin, and the 2021-23 Houston Poet Laureate, Emanuelee "Outspoken" Bean.
“It is an honor to have selected Aris as the next Poet Laureate,” Turner said. “She represents Houston’s literary future with her prophetic poetry. She will continue the Poet Laureates' hard work before her, inspire the City of Houston with her words, and bring out the poetry in everyone. My heart is gladdened to see the Houston Poet Laureate program continue to thrive and become a part of my legacy as Mayor of this Arts City.”
"Poetry, language, and building narrative power are all my life's work,” says Aris Kian Brown. “As the next Poet Laureate, I am looking forward to being able to share my love for both community organizing and creative expression."
Brown was selected through a competitive process by a diverse group of poets, scholars, literary experts, and community representatives. The Committee consisted of Poet Laureate Emeritus, Emanuelee “Outspoken” Bean; Elizabeth Gregory of the University of Houston; Terri Hamm of Kindred Stories; Rich Levy of Inprint; Eloísa Pérez-Lozano of The Acentos Review; and César Ramos of Raspa Magazine. Non-voting members include Victor Ancheta of the Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs (MOCA) and Justin Bogert with the Houston Public Library (HPL).
Aris’ two-year term runs through April 2025.