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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


Page ViewsPoemComments
8284 For The Anniversary Of My Death Comments and analysis of For The Anniversary Of My Death by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
5922 When You Go Away
5802 For A Coming Extinction
5153 The Speed Of Light Comments and analysis of The Speed Of Light by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
4870 My Friends Comments and analysis of My Friends by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
4287 Some Last Questions Comments and analysis of Some Last Questions by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
4274 The River Of Bees
4041 Unknown Bird
3936 Wish Comments and analysis of Wish by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
3899 Any Time Comments and analysis of Any Time by W.S. Merwin 8 Comments
3651 Before The Flood Comments and analysis of Before The Flood by W.S. Merwin 28 Comments
3161 The Source
3100 Beggars And Kings
3034 Whenever I Go There
2949 December Night Comments and analysis of December Night by W.S. Merwin 5 Comments
2940 Vehicles
2883 It Is March
2818 The Burnt Child
2443 Term Comments and analysis of Term by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
837 The Ships Are Made Ready In Silence
478 Green Fields
226 Air Comments and analysis of Air by W.S. Merwin 213 Comments
134 Yesterday Comments and analysis of Yesterday by W.S. Merwin 259 Comments


Books by W.S. Merwin
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