Indiana Humanities, in partnership with Brick Street Poetry and the Indianapolis Public Library, welcomed U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith to Indiana for a poetry tour from Nov. 27 to Nov. 29. The events were held in Greencastle, Hanover, Indianapolis and Shelbyville. The tour served as the closing program for Indiana Humanities’ two-year thematic initiative called Quantum Leap which explores the spirit of possibility and problem solving that happens when we bridge the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields with the humanities (poetry, literature, history, philosophy, religion, world languages and culture, etc.).
Smith, whose book of poetry Life on Mars won the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 2011, was in part inspired by her father’s work as an engineer for the Hubble Space Telescope and includes science fiction and cosmic themes.
At each location, Smith will be paired with a local moderator for a special INconversation and take questions from the audience. In Indianapolis, Smith will be joined by Indiana Poet Laureate Adrian Matejka on Nov. 29. Matejka, who grew up in Indianapolis and now teaches at Indiana University, has also written about space themes in his critically acclaimed book of poetry Map to the Stars. You can view photos from her stop in Indianapolis here.