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The Selection Committee is delighted to announce that the next Poet Laureate of Silver City and Grant County will be Eve West Bessier.

This honorary role is awarded to a person who has established a presence in the world of poetry, demonstrated a commitment to the literary art form, and embraces the opportunity to engage in civil discourse. Following the tenure of co-poets laureate Beate Sigriddaughter and Jack Crocker, the committee received several applications for the role and after interviewing all applicants, the committee offered Bessier the position.

Eve West Bessier was born in the Netherlands. When Eve was seven, she and her mother immigrated to San Francisco. Eve holds a Master of Education from the University of California, Davis as well as a Bachelor of Arts in English from San Francisco State University. She moved to New Mexico almost five years ago, and is the new host and coordinator of the monthly Just Words Literary Reading series. Eve is an award-winning author of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction whose latest poetry collection, Roots Music: Listening to Jazz, has just been published, and novel, New Rain, was just released in paperback. Eve is a retired social scientist, studio musician, jazz vocalist and voice coach, and visual artist. A nature enthusiast, Eve hikes on the Continental Divide Trail daily and enjoys the many cultural events Silver City offers.

The poet will serve a two-year term, beginning May 1, 2019, with an option for a third year if mutually agreed. The Poet Laureate program is run by the Southwest Festival of the Written Word.

The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Southwest Word Fiesta™ or its steering committee.

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We respectfully acknowledge that the entirety of southwestern New Mexico is the traditional territory, since time immemorial, of the Chis-Nde, also known as the people of the Chiricahua Apache Nation. The Chiricahua Apache Nation is recognized as a sovereign Native Nation by the United States in the Treaty of Amity, Commerce, and Friendship of 1 July 1852 (10 Stat. 979) (Treaty of Santa Fe ratified 23 March 1853 and proclaimed by President Franklin Pierce 25 March 1853).

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Mimbres Press of Western New Mexico University is a traditional academic press that welcomes agented and unagented submissions in the following genres: literary fiction, creative non-fiction, essays, memoir, poetry, children’s books, historical fiction, and academic books. We are particularly interested in academic work and commercial work with a strong social message, including but not limited to works of history, reportage, biography, anthropology, culture, human rights, and the natural world. We will also consider selective works of national and global significance.