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Biography of W.S. Merwin

W.S. Merwin

W.S. Merwin (1927 - Present)

William Stanley (W.S.) Merwin was born on September 30, 1927 in New York City and grew up in Union City, New Jersey, and Scranton, Pennsylvania. He was graduated from Princeton University and worked as a tutor in Europe and translator.

From 1956 to 1957 Merwin was also playwright-in-residence at the Poet's Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts and poetry editor at The Nation in 1962. Besides being a prolific poet (he has published over fifteen volumes of his works) he is also a respected translator of Spanish, French, and Latin poetry, including Dante's Purgatorio. Merwin is probably best known for his poetry about the Vietnam War, and can be included among the canon of Vietnam War-era poets which includes such luminaries as Robert Bly, Adrienne Rich, Denise Levertov, Robert Lowell, Allen Ginsburg and Yousef Komunyakaa.

In 1998 Merwin wrote Folding Cliffs: A Narrative, an ambitious novel-in-verse about Hawaiian history and legend.


Biography by: This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License and uses material adapted in whole or in part from the Wikipedia article on W.S. Merwin.


23 Poems written by W.S. Merwin

The poems are by default sorted according to volume, but you can also choose to sort them alphabetically or by page views.

Volume | Alphabetically | Page Views | Comments | [First Lines]


First LineComments
At the last minute a word is waiting Comments and analysis of Term by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
By this part of the century few are left who believe
Every year without knowing it I have passed the day Comments and analysis of For The Anniversary Of My Death by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
Gray whale
How long ago the day is Comments and analysis of Any Time by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
In a dream I returned to the river of bees
In the evening
It is March and black dust falls out of the books
Matches among other things that were not allowed
Moored to the same ring:
My friend says I was not a good son Comments and analysis of Yesterday by W.S. Merwin 51 Comments
My friends without shields walk on the target Comments and analysis of My Friends by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
Naturally it is night. Comments and analysis of Air by W.S. Merwin 18 Comments
Out of the dry days
So gradual in those summers was the going Comments and analysis of The Speed Of Light by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
The cold slope is standing in darkness
The star in my Comments and analysis of Wish by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
There in the fringe of trees between
This is a place on the way after the distances
What is the head Comments and analysis of Some Last Questions by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
When you go away the wind clicks around to the north
Whenever I go there everything is changed
Why did he promise me Comments and analysis of Before The Flood by W.S. Merwin 15 Comments


Books by W.S. Merwin
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