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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
8405 For The Anniversary Of My Death Comments and analysis of For The Anniversary Of My Death by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
5964 When You Go Away
5883 For A Coming Extinction
5200 The Speed Of Light Comments and analysis of The Speed Of Light by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
4934 My Friends Comments and analysis of My Friends by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
4350 The River Of Bees
4340 Some Last Questions Comments and analysis of Some Last Questions by W.S. Merwin 2 Comments
4102 Unknown Bird
4073 Wish Comments and analysis of Wish by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
3980 Any Time Comments and analysis of Any Time by W.S. Merwin 8 Comments
3758 Before The Flood Comments and analysis of Before The Flood by W.S. Merwin 28 Comments
3220 Beggars And Kings
3204 The Source
3110 Whenever I Go There
3041 December Night Comments and analysis of December Night by W.S. Merwin 5 Comments
3011 Vehicles
2878 The Burnt Child
2492 Term Comments and analysis of Term by W.S. Merwin 1 Comment
964 The Ships Are Made Ready In Silence
539 Green Fields
412 Air Comments and analysis of Air by W.S. Merwin 213 Comments
299 Yesterday Comments and analysis of Yesterday by W.S. Merwin 259 Comments
35 It Is March


Books by W.S. Merwin
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