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The Jackson County Public Library received a bequest of 450 books of poetry from the estate of the late Kathryn Stripling Byer. Byer, formerly the poet laureate of North Carolina, passed away on June 5th, 2017.

Throughout her career as a professor and poet, Byer was poet-in-residence at WCU, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Appalachian State University, and Lenoir Rhyne College. She published six full-length books of poetry: The Girl in the Midst of the Harvest, Wildwood Flower, Black Shawl, Catching Light, Coming to Rest, and Descent. She also published several chapbooks, the latest being Vishnu Bird in 2015.

Byer received the North Carolina Award for Literature from the governor in 2001, and served as North Carolina Poet Laureate from 2005-2009. She was inducted into the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame in 2012.

With its wide array of topics and wealth of information, the Kathryn Stripling Byer Laureate Collection will be an immeasurable asset to our community, and the Library is eternally grateful for this bequest.