Mi’kmaw woman named new Halifax Poet Laureate
Rebecca Thomas is a Mi’kmaw poet, spoken word artist, current Halifax Slam Master, and Coordinator of Aboriginal Student Services at NSCC.
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Halifax will have a new Poet Laureate in a few weeks.
Mayor Mike Savage announced Tuesday that Rebecca Thomas will take over the position on April 1 for a two-year term.
Thomas is a Mi’kmaw poet, spoken word artist, and current Halifax Slam Master. She’s also the Coordinator of Aboriginal Student Services at the Nova Scotia Community College.
“Poetry can give a voice to the voiceless. Poetry can make a powerless person feel powerful,” Thomas is quoted saying in a release from the municipality. “This is why I speak.”
“Coming from an Indigenous background whose family has been greatly impacted by residential schools, Ms. Thomas has come to recognize the lack of prominence given to First Nations perspectives within the history of Halifax,” says the release.
“She embraces the opportunity to bring her cultural voice to the broader public discussion through the Poet Laureate position, and believes that the arts and poetry can help people heal in ways beyond traditional therapies.”
Thomas will give a special reading at a regional council meeting in late April. The municipality will hold a reception to usher her in, and celebrate the legacy of out-going Poet Laureate El Jones, who’s held the position since 2013.