W. D. Snodgrass, 11th Annual ODU Literary Festival


W.D. Snodgrass

Document Type

Featured Participant

Festival Date



University Theatre

Author/Artist Bio

Of W. D. Snodgrass's most recent book, one reviewer said: "On the evidence of his Selected Poems 1957-8 7, W. D. Snodgrass is one of the six best poets now writing in English." Snodgrass's first book, Heart's Needle, won the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1960; in 1961, that same volume won the British Guinness Award. Of Heart's Needle, critics said, Snodgrass "has found a place for emotions felt, but previously left without words and out of consciousness. He has identified himself with exquisite suffering and guilt and with all those who barely manage to exist on the edge of life." The poems of his The Fueher Bunker (1977) have been called "a rare example of ambitious, ongoing verse sculpture." The Death of Cock Robin, which will be published in the spring of 1989, includes such playful titles as "W. D. Lifts Ten Times the Weight of His Own Body," and "Disguised as Humpty Dumpty, W. D. Practices Tumbling." His other books include After Experience (1967), Remains (1970, revised edition, 1985), and In Radical Pursuit, a collection of critical essays (1975). He has published numerous song and poetry translations, including (with Lore Segal) Christian Morgenstern's Gallows Songs, as well as minnesinger and troubadour songs. A former Distinguished Visiting Professor in creative writing at Old Dominion University, he is currently Distinguished Professor of creative writing and poetry at the University of Delaware. He continues to be one of the most original voices in American poetry.


W. D. Snodgrass read with Donald Hall in the Festival Preview and Fund Raiser on Thursday, September 22, at 8 p.m. in the University Theatre.


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