Friday, July 26, 2019


Last week, Jared Polis named Bobby Lefebre Colorado's Poet Laureate. According to his website, "Bobby LeFebre is an award-winning writer, performer, and cultural worker from Denver, Colorado. He is a two-time Grand Slam Champion, a National Poetry Slam Finalist, an Individual World Poetry Slam Finalist, and a two-time TEDx speaker.  LeFebre has performed at hundreds of cultural events, social actions, detention centers, conferences, and colleges and universities across the United States and abroad." He's also a playwright, whose newest play, Northside, just completed a 25 day run at Su Teatro in Denver. And the coolest thing for me-- last week I ran into G, who works in the cafeteria at my school. She's Bobby's mother!

Upon his appointment, Lefebre said, "The poet, and more importantly to me, the poet laureate, should not only strive to raise the consciousness and appreciation and the promotion and consumption and reading and writing of poetry, but they should also strive to raise the consciousness of our collective psyche, and heal where there is hurt, celebrate where there is joy, share where there is peace, disrupt where there is stagnation, build where there is opportunity, fight where there is conflict, and challenge where there is complacency," LeFebre said.

I didn't have an easy time finding his work on line. The one poem I did find is "Social Worker," a spoken word poem that LeFebre performed as a TED talk. 

"Social Worker"

When I tell people what I do for a living
they often respond by saying things like
"bless your soul" "that must be difficult" and my all time favorite, "it's so nice seeing someone not work for the money"
I'm a social worker
I tend to the wounds of people crucified by circumstance
carry hope and band-aids in my briefcase
share my own scars for street cred
I work with kids who see their probation officers
more than their fathers

Check out Bobby's website here. 

Enjoy other poems at Margaret's Reflections on the Teche


Linda Mitchell said...

Wow! What a dynamo. It looks like Colorado is in for some poetry noise! Yay. Keep us posted on how he does.

Linda B said...

That is wonderful that you know his mother, & the poem shows his heart beautifully, doesn't it? I saw the announcement & bookmarked the page, but I did not know of him. Thanks, Carol!

Jean said...

Thank you for teaching me so many things! I love that you know his mother!

Margaret Simon said...

I sent the poem to my daughter who is a social worker in New Orleans. And she doesn't do it for the money, but unfortunately is always worried about money because of it.

Cheriee Weichel said...

That poem is a punch in the gut isn't it? I have shared it with my social working / teaching people.

Kay said...

Wow! He speaks powerfully through his poetry.

Tabatha said...

Thanks for introducing me to Mr. Lefebre and his work! His passion is powerful.

Mary Lee said...

WAY cool that you know his mom. You know his roots. Like Linda M., I'm hoping for some poetry noise in CO!

Molly Hogan said...

What a powerful poem, filled with amazing imagery and pain and compassion. Thanks for sharing!

Carol Varsalona said...

Carol, thank you for sharing this wonderful poet and his amazing Ted Talk and poem. I have known and taught many teens who remind me of the children in the poem: "they speak in sign language because they have been taught they are voiceless." These are the students who need teachers to guide them as they find their voices.

Ruth said...

Thanks for the introduction!

Kimberly Hutmacher said...

What an incredibly poignant poem.

clar said...

I learned a lot thanks!