I was going to write an entry about the new National Poet Laureate, Kay Ryan (who also, tah dah!, happens to be an out lesbian) ... but just go read Collin's because I couldn't say it any better.
Here's the main question, though: Would you rather be named Poet Laureate, or would you rather be quoted in the comic strip The Boondocks? Here's the experience Ryan had with the latter:
Carol and I were reading the paper on Sunday morning in bed, and Carol is reading the funnies, and she says in this stricken or awed or something tone, she says: "Kay, read this out loud" and she passes me the funnies. I start reading this cartoon and it is Boondocks and in it, the little brother, who wants to get his bit of the action now and is complaining is smacked down by his big brother, Huey, who uses my poem "Patience" in this cartoon. It was just astonishing. He says: "You know, a poet named Kay Ryan once said, 'Who would have guessed it possible that waiting is sustainable—a place with its own harvests. Or that in time's fullness the diamonds of patience couldn't be distinguished from the genuine in brilliance or hardness.' What do you think that means?" Huey asks Riley. Riley answers: "It means you're a nerd and poetry is stupid."
(quoted from here)