Yesterday, The United States of America received a new Poet Laureate, with not even a passing mention on this blog. We're sorry. We love poets, poetry and poet laureates!

Kay Ryan, the nations's 16th Poet Laureate, has taken over the position from Charles Simic (who, for those of you near Phoenix, will be reading here in the fall). Ryan is the author of six poetry collections, all with enviable titles: The Niagara River (Grove Press, 2005); Say Uncle (2000); Elephant Rocks (1996); Flamingo Watching (1994); Strangely Marked Metal (1985); and Dragon Acts to Dragon Ends (1983).

Upon hearing that the Library of Congress had called, she thought to herself, "I can't have that many overdue books." If you don't love her a little bit after that, try this essay from Poetry magazine on for size, where she explores her "aversion to cooperative endeavors" during her first AWP conference. Even if you've never lost your sense of self at the AWP bookfair, it's a funny and wonderful read.