Poet Laureate

Olympia's First Poet Laureate

Olympia Poet Laureate Amy Solomon-MinarchiOn November 22, 2016 City Council named Amy Solomon-Minarchi as Olympia's first Poet Laureate.

Amy has over 15 years of continuous writing experience and currently teaches English and Creative Writing at North Thurston High School. She has a long history of mentoring broad audiences and a passion for building community through poetry.

About the Position

The goal of the Poet Laureate is to:

  • Promote poetry as an art form
  • Expand access to the literary arts
  • Connect the community to poetry
  • Promote poetry as a community voice that contributes to a sense of place

During her tenure as Poet Laureate, Amy will write a variety of original poems and develop and host a series of public events and workshops.

Poetry On the Bus

The following poems were selected from citizen submissions and will be featured on Intercity Transit buses and bus shelters around Olympia.

Madonna of the Boardwalk Joanne Clarkson  Cooper Pt Rd & 12th Ave n/a


Mandy Paradise Pacific Ave & Pattison n/a
The Beginning of All Things Erin Crosland Evergreen Park Dr at Heritage Park Apts n/a
The Salish Prairie Bill Yake Harrison Ave & Kenyon St n/a
Love the Sound Patrick Holm Decatur St & 9th Ave n/a
Three Approaches Sean Williams 8th Ave & Franklin St n/a
Freedom Lennee Reid Division St & Harrison Ave n/a
Ride the Bus, It's a Plus! Marquitta Rossman 4th Ave & Pacific Ave n/a
It's Contagious Kristi A. Morrish Ensign Rd at St Peter Hospital n/a
Olympia and other words for water Kathleen Byrd Bethel St & San Francisco Ave n/a
Listen to the Moon Sandra Bates Conger Ave at Capital High School n/a
Welcome Keith-Bradley Hewitt Martin Way & Lilly Rd n/a
From the Street Bethany Ramos n/a Coming soon
Water's Memory M. Seven Bremner n/a Coming soon
Living in Olympia Has Made Me A Better Person Linda Chandler Smith n/a Coming soon
Olympia Trilogy Beverly Ann Jackson n/a Coming soon
Park of the Seven Oars Denny Jackson n/a Coming soon
Home Megan Bushree n/a Coming soon
Crossing Paths JennyAnn Wheeler n/a Coming soon
The Places I Will Be Bradley Andrews n/a Coming soon
Love lies laughing Mian Bond-Carvin n/a Coming soon
Northern Adventures Maureen Canny n/a Coming soon


Original Poetry

Cars speed past pedestrians in crosswalks

while babies stain Snugglies, dogs strain leashes

drivers yell, 900 points, and mean it.

Mount Rainier so majestic, could we climb it if

the tsunami hits? Better yet, seek the water tower

pack the power bars, guzzle Powerade

and wait to be saved. Or if it erupts

could we outrun the lava flow in our

Prius? Would we run out of gas mid-flee?

If only my mother were here. We could

be generations until the white waves

wash us out to sea, or the red hand claims us.

Look me in the eyes
so we may soften the harsh glow of our devices.
Our bond is stronger than that,

right? Obsessed with now,
and now, and now,
you say you don’t love,
but--ah! I’ve seen you

laugh with half-time banana powered
camaraderie on the soccer sideline,

imagine empires on the Madison playground
until nightfall and beg to stay longer,

sing the Little Shop of Horrors soundtrack
out the car window, through the Eastside,

scavenge the neighborhood for the biggest
holiday light wonderland display ever every December,

memorize punchlines from the class joke books
for supper time stand-up,

invent drum solos while Zaydee
taps old tunes on the piano,

bait your own hook, cast into Ward Lake
and pull out three times more trout than dad,

burn trenches with supersonic
feet into hardwood flooring,

search for Bigfoot in the backyard
on a tip from a buddy.

Look me in the eyes,
let’s learn again how to
embrace the fuzzy edges of our humanity,
together, with love. Unplug.


Contact Stephanie Johnson at 360.709.2678 or sjohnso1@ci.olympia.wa.us