As a young child, Danielle Legros Georges learned that life could stop in one place, and begin again thousands of miles away. She was born in Haiti but her family left for Zaire, political exiles from their homeland. They moved again, to Boston, when she was 6, joining some of the city’s early Haitian immigrants in Mattapan.
“I was constantly trying to make sense of things,” she said.
The small community of Haitians in Boston exposed their children to the arts — theatre and dance and painting — of their home country. Somewhere Legros Georges fell in love with poetry and she published her first creative piece in the Emerson College literary journal. Many of her poems describe her native country, which she visits regularly.
This fall, Legros Georges was chosen as Boston’s second poet laureate, following Sam Cornish, who won the position in 2008. She plans to use it to bring poetry to diverse groups in the city, capitalizing on the talent she learned young: traveling between different communities.