Minnesota bill to create post for State Poet Laureate has a beat to it

March 2, 2007 · Print This Article

Section 1. [138.99] POET LAUREATE
Subdivision 1. Appointment.

The Gov’ shall appoint a state poet laureate,
Who shall serve for a four-year term.
Because this appointment will always be great,
There’s no need for the Senate to confirm.
In appointing a poet for the public good,
And to ensure there’s no unjust omission,
The governor shall consider, if he would
Thoughts of the Humanities Commission.

Subd. 2. Removal.

The poet will be free to write rhyming lines,
With removal only for cause,
But we trust that the bard will promptly resign,
If the verse reads as badly as laws.

Subd. 3. Compensation.

‘Twould be fair to provide some just recompense
As reward for the poet’s tribulations,
But because at this time we haven’t the cents
We’re afraid there is no compensation.
But we ask as the poet travels the state,
And the people their ears they lend,
That our learned Commission take the position
To provide the poor poet a stipend.

Subd. 4. Gifts and grants.

To provide the support that needs to come
To support our new laureate,
Gifts and grants received of a generous sum,
We hereby appropriate.

Sadly, the Minnesota Daily reported that if the bill goes into law, “the poem would probably be taken out of the law and go on the books in standard legalese.”

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