Born in St. Joseph, Joyce Sutphen is Minnesota's second poet laureate. She holds a Ph.D. in renaissance drama from the University of Minnesota and currently resides in the city of Chaska.

upcoming events

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Jul 16 2018
Reading with Joseph Legaspi, 신 선 영 Sun Yung Shin, & May Lee-Yang
Join us for a poetry reading with Joseph Legaspi, 신 선 영 Sun Yung Shin, and May Lee-Yang. 
Joseph O. Legaspi is the author of the poetry collections Threshold and Imago, both from CavanKerry Press; and three chapbooks: Postcards (Ghost Bird Press), Aviary, Bestiary (Organic Weapon Arts), winner of The Blair Prize, and Subways (Thrush Press). His works have appeared in POETRY, New England Review, Harvard Review, Best of the Net, World Literature Today, Water~Stone Review, the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a- Day, and the anthologies Language for a New Century (W.W. Norton), Everyman Pocket Poets Anthology (Alfred A. Knopf), among others. He is a recipient of fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation, New York Foundation for the Arts, and a Global Filipino Literary Award. He cofounded and currently serves on the board of Kundiman (www.kundiman.org), a nonprofit organization serving generations of Asian American writers and readers.
신 선 영 Sun Yung Shin is the author of poetry/essay collections Unbearable Splendor (Minnesota Book Award); Rough, and Savage; and Skirt Full of Black (Asian American Literary Award), editor of A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota, co-editor of Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption, and author of bilingual illustrated book for children Cooper’s Lesson. With poet Su Hwang she co-founded and co-directs Poetry Asylum, an arts organization dedicated to creating spaces for marginalized voices and poetries.
May Lee-Yang is a writer, performance artist, and teaching artist. She is the author of the children’s book The Imaginary Day and has been published in Nimrod Journal, Water~Stone Literary Review, Bamboo Among the Oaks: Contemporary Writing By Hmong Americans, and others. Her theater-based works include Confessions of a Lazy Hmong Woman, Hmong-Lao Friendship Play, and the upcoming The Korean Drama Addict’s Guide to Losing Your Virginity. She is a former participant of VONA (Voices of Our Nation) and the Kundiman Retreat. She is a recipient of the 2016 Ordway Sally Award for Arts Access. Through a grant from the Loft’s Spoken Word Immersion program, she is currently working on The Dead Hmong Women Project, which uses poetry to examine domestic violence.
3032 Minnehaha Ave
55406 Minneapolis, Minnesota

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Poetry in Minnesota
Minnesota poet laureate

Joyce Sutphen

Joyce Sutphen is the author of Modern Love & Other Myths (Red Dragonfly Press, 2015), After Words (Red Dragonfly Press, 2013), and First Words (...


                                       ... reverberation
                              Of thunder of spring over distant mountains
                              He who was living is now dead
                              We who were living are now dying
                              With a little patience.

for Mike, July 2016

        After Dale’s sudden cancer,    
                                                   his body wasting swiftly to death,
        I didn’t believe in love or beauty,                          or my ability
                    to write poems.



Do not move. Let me speak of a river in paradise
A turquoise gift from fiery stars that is paradise

How do you measure a river’s weight, color, smell, touch?
How do you feel the veins of sand in a breathing paradise?

Eons of earth story, long before rocks, plants or bones