Notable Quotable: Poet Huascar Medina

By Paulette Beete
A man clutching a book in his arms.

Photo courtesy of the author

“I write for every day, ordinary people so they can have extraordinary moments of truth and empathy. That’s what my writing is geared towards.  So I want to have conversations through poetry. I want to have those hard talks in soft ways with poetry at the center…It is when we speak through a creative process or through art it gives us grace in conversation and it can lead to, if we’re expressing ourselves authentically, to a moment of empathy with another person, which I think is the highest form of understanding.” — Huascar Medina

Huascar Medina, a member of the National Council on the Arts, served as the Poet Laureate of Kansas from 2019-2022. He was not only the state’s first Latino Poet Laureate, but also the first non-academic coming instead from the working class and bringing a strong and vibrant voice to Kansas poetry in the 21st century. Listen to our conversation with Medina—including recitations of several of his poems—in the Art Works podcast section of our website.

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