41. The Power of Poetry: Reaching Others Through Vulnerability With Ashley M. Jones

Poetry is a powerful way to rise above the noise, show vulnerability, and spark meaningful dialogue. 

In this episode, Matt Halloran talks to Ashley M. Jones, the Poet Laureate of the state of Alabama (2022-2026). Ashley shares what she plans to do with her tenure,  how she started writing poetry, and why vulnerability is our greatest tool for reaching others. 

Ashley discusses:

  • Her journey to becoming the first person of color to be named Poet Laureate for the state of Alabama
  • What has helped her to approach her writing with greater vulnerability
  • Her new book, “Reparations Now!”
  • How poetry is helping people engage in conversations about race and consider other perspectives and experiences
  • And more


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About Our Guest:

Ashley M. Jones is Poet Laureate of the state of Alabama (2022-2026). She received an MFA in Poetry from Florida International University (FIU), where she was a John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Fellow. She served as Official Poet for the City of Sunrise, Florida’s Little Free Libraries Initiative from 2013-2015, and her work was recognized in the 2014 Poets and Writers Maureen Egen Writer’s Exchange Contest and the 2015 Academy of American Poets Contest at FIU. She was also a finalist in the 2015 Hub City Press New Southern Voices Contest, the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry First Book Award Contest, and the National Poetry Series.


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