Poet Laureate 2024

Lisa DeVuono is a poet and printmaker living in Ambler. Recently retired, she has worked as a librarian in a variety of medical and community-based settings, most recently with the Cheltenham Township Library System, creating and promoting adult programs. 
She was a poetry therapy facilitator working with cancer patients, teens in recovery and with members of various Clubhouse organizations. She wrote a peer-based curriculum Poetry as a Tool for Recovery: An Easy-to-Use Guide in Eight Sessions for use in organizations working with persons living with mental health challenges. This served as the basis of a full training module taught by John Fox, author and founder of the Institute for Poetic Medicine. She was a creativity coach for the Artist Conference Network, a nationwide coaching community for artists of all kinds.
She was one of the founders of It Ain’t Pretty, a women’s writing collective that performed locally. She produced multi-media shows incorporating song, music, poetry, and dance, including Rumi in Song at the Sedgwick Theater, and Whole Heart Home and Breaking Open Breaking Free, part of the IceHouse Tonight series in Bethlehem. 
She also co-facilitates workshops and performances with her husband Michael London with his musical interpretation of the poems of Rumi.
In addition to the full-length manuscript This Time Roots, Next Time Wings, her poetry has appeared in the Mad Poets Review, Paterson Literary Review, and the anthology Grit Gravity & Grace: New Poems about Medicine and Healthcare. She is the author of the chapbook Poems from the Playground of Risk, published by Pudding House Press, and was the recipient of an honorable mention in Passaic County Community College’s annual Allen Ginsberg Contest.

Each poem lifts a window into the universal experience of being human in inviting and skillful ways. From observing nature at play to pondering the remnants of past love to exploring family memories, to the tender and heartbreaking tasks of managing the impact of a loved one’s illness, the poems warmly invite the reader to enter and to be more than a witness. The writer beautifully crafts stories in tight lines that open into an entire world, requiring a mix of emotional heft, lightheartedness, and grace. It was a pleasure to read these poems. 

Trapeta Mayson

2023 Celebrity Judge