Diane Wakoski (born 1937) is an American poet who is associated with the “deep image” poets and the Beats.
Wakoski was born in Whittier, California and studied at the University of California, Berkeley, where she participated in Thom Gunn’s poetry workshops.
Her early work was part of the “deep image” movement that also included Jerome Rothenberg and Robert Kelly, among others. She also cites William Carlos Williams and Allen Ginsberg as influences and her later work is more personal and conversational in the Williams mode.
She has published over forty books of poetry, including Emerald Ice : Selected Poems 1962-1987 (1988) and the four volumes of her The Archaeology of Movies and Books sequence, Argonaut Rose (1998), The Emerald City of Las Vegas (1995), Jason the Sailor (1993), and Medea the Sorceress (1991). A book of essays, Towards a New Poetry was published in 1980. She is best known for a series of poems collectively known as “The Leather Jacket Diaries.” She won the prestigious William Carlos Williams award for her book Emerald Ice.
Wakoski teaches creative writing at Michigan State University.