Fans of cult singer/songwriter John Darnielle have launched a petition to land The Mountain Goats star a nod as the next U.S. Poet Laureate.

More than 400 devotees have signed the online petition, calling Darnielle "an American institution" and "an inspiration to poets, artists and sundry other human beings".

The aim of those who launched the bid on 26 December (12) is to score 25,000 names.

America's current Poet Laureate is Pulitzer Prize winner Natasha Trethewey.

Darnielle insists, "I did not do this."