- Associated Press - Friday, February 21, 2014

BETHEL, Maine (AP) - A Maine poet who spoke at the presidential inauguration says he hopes a visiting writers program will help to create a new generation of readers who appreciate poetry.

Bethel resident Richard Blanco on Thursday announced that the Gould Academy program’s first participating writer, poet Spencer Reece, will spend two weeks in Bethel next month. Over a two-week retreat, Reece will stay in a private cottage where he can work. He’ll also engage with students and faculty.

Gould Academy Head of School Matt Ruby called the program “an exceptional opportunity for our students, faculty and the region.”

Blanco drew wide praise for his poem, “One Today,” that paid homage to the American experience during President Barack Obama’s second inauguration. The son of Cuban exiles moved to western Maine several years ago.

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