U.S. Poet Laureate Ada Limón to visit Rainier

Come see the 24th Poet Laureate on Friday, June 21 at 5 p.m. at Paradise.

Mount Rainier has inspired people for centuries, with artists of all backgrounds seeking to capture the mountain’s awe-inspiring landscape. Ada Limón, the country’s 24th Poet Laureate, will celebrate that legacy at a special event at Paradise, in Mount Rainier National Park, on Friday, June 21 at 5 p.m.

Seven national parks, including Mount Rainier National Park, were selected by Limón to be part of her signature project “You are Here: Poetry in Parks.” The initiative is a partnership between the National Park Service, Library of Congress, and the Poetry Society of America that features site-specific poetry installations in the parks. In each park, Limón will support events that nurture connections to the natural world and unveil a picnic table that has been transformed into a work of public art. Each table is inscribed with a historic American poem that relates to the park in a meaningful way.

I want to champion the ways reading and writing poetry can situate us in the natural world. Never has it been more urgent to feel a sense of reciprocity with our environment, and poetry’s alchemical mix of attention, silence, and rhythm gives us a reciprocal way of experiencing nature—of communing with the natural world through breath and presence,” said Limón. Mount Rainier National Park is the second stop of Limón’s “You Are Here: Poetry in Parks” tour. She launched the nationwide art project at Cape Cod National Seashore on June 14, 2024. Over the next several months, she will also visit Redwood National and State Parks in California, Cuyahoga Valley National Park in Ohio, Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee, Everglades National Park in Florida, and Saguaro National Park in Arizona.

At Mount Rainier, Limón will unveil a picnic table with an overlay featuring A.R. Ammons’ poem “Uppermost” at the Jackson Visitor Center in the Paradise area of Mount Rainier National Park. A recipient of the Poetry Society of America’s Robert Frost Medal in 1994, Ammons’ work focused on change both in nature and in life. Limón will participate in a book signing at 4:15 p.m. at the Paradise Inn, followed by a public presentation adjacent to the Jackson Visitor Center at 5 p.m.

Timed entry reservations for the popular Paradise Corridor are in effect daily from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily through September 2, 2024. While the timed entry reservation period will conclude prior to the presentation, timed entry reservations can be made on the recreation.gov website for visitors seeking to enter the park prior to 3 p.m. A second block of timed entry reservations will be released at 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 20 for visits the following day. More information on timed entry reservations can be found on the park’s website for timed entry. A valid entry pass is required for all visitors to the park.

You Are Here: Poetry in Parks” includes an invitation for public participation. The National Park Service and Limón hope people of all ages—poets and non-poets—will feel moved to write their own responses to the You Are Here prompt of “What would you write in response to the landscape around you?” People have the option to share their responses on social media using the hashtag #YouAreHerePoetry.

Limón was appointed as the 24th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress on July 12, 2022, and was reappointed for a historic two-year second term on April 24, 2023. Limón’s second term will conclude in April 2025.

For general information on Mount Rainier National Park, please visit the park website.