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Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: ilza (
Date: April 06, 2005 07:55AM

Ted Kooser, born in Iowa, April 25, 1939
for Shadows
a recap :

2004 Walking to Martha’s Vineyard - Franz Wright
2003 Moy Sand and Gravel - Paul Muldoon
2002 Practical Gods - Carl Dennis
2001 - Different hours - Stephen Dunn
2000 Repair, by C.K. Williams
1999 Blizzard of One, by Mark Strand
1998 Black Zodiac, by Charles Wright
1997 Alive Together: New and Selected Poems, by Lisel Mueller
1996 The Dream of the Unified Field by Jorie Graham
1995 The Simple Truth, Philip Levine
1994 Neon Vernacular: New & selected Poems, Yusef Komunyakaa
1993 The Wild Iris, Louise Glück
1992 Selected Poems, James Tate
1991 Near Changes, by Mona Van Duyn
1990 The World Doesn’t End, by Charles Simic
1989 New and Collected Poems, by Richard Wilbur
1988 Partial Accounts: New and Selected Poems, by William Meredith
1987 Thomas and Beulah, by Rita Dove
1986 The Flying Change, by Henry Taylor
1985 Yin, by Carolyn Kizer
1984 American Primitive, by Mary Oliver
1983 Selected Poems, by Galway Kinnell
1982 The Collected Poems, by Sylvia Plath
1981 The Morning of the Poem, by James Schuyler
1980 Selected Poems, by Donald Justice
1979 Now and Then, by Robert Penn Warren
1978 Collected Poems, by Howard Nemerov
1977 Divine Comedies, by James Merrill
1976 Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror, by John Ashbery
1975 Turtle Island, by Gary Snyder
1974 The Dolphin, by Robert Lowell
1973 Up Country, by Maxine Kumin
1972 Collected Poems, by James Wright
1971 The Carrier of Ladders, by W.S. Merwin
1970 Untitled Subjects, by Richard Howard
1969 Of Being Numerous, by George Oppen
1968 The Hard Hours, by Anthony Hecht
1967 Live or Die, by Anne Sexton
1966 Selected Poems, by Richard Eberhart
1965 77 Dream Songs, by John Berryman
1964 At the End of the Open Road, by Louis Simpson
1963 Pictures from Breughel, by William Carlos Williams
1962 Poems, by Alan Dugan
1961 Times Three: Selected Verse From Three Decades, by Phyllis McGinley
1960 Heart’s Needle, by W.D. Snodgrass
1959 Selected Poems 1928-1958, by Stanley Kunitz
1958 Promises: Poems 1954-1956, by Robert Penn Warren
1957 Things of This World, by Richard Wilbur
1956 Poems-North & South, by Elizabeth Bishop
1955 Collected Poems, by Wallace Stevens
1954 The Waking, by Theodore Roethke
1953 Collected Poems 1917-1952, by Archibald MacLeish
1952 Collected Poems, by Marianne Moore
1951 Complete Poems, by Carl Sandburg
1950 Annie Allen, by Gwendolyn Brooks
1949 Terror and Decorum, by Peter Viereck
1948 The Age of Anxiety, by W.H. Auden
1947 Lord Weary’s Castle, by Robert Lowell
1946 No Award
1945 V-Letter and Other Poems, by Karl Shapiro
1944 Western Star, by Stephen Vincent Benet
1943 A Witness Tree, by Robert Frost
1942 The Dust Which Is God, by William Rose Benet
1941 Sunderland Capture, Leornard Bacon
1940 Collected Poems, by Mark Van Doren
1939 Selected Poems, by John Gould Fletcher
1938 Cold Morning Sky, by Marya Zaturenska
1937 A Further Range, by Robert Frost
1936 Strange Holiness, by Robert P. Tristram Coffin
1935 Bright Ambush, by Audrey Wurdemann
1934 Collected Verse, by Robert Hillyer
1933 Conquistador, by Archibald MacLeish
1932 The Flowering Stone, by George Dillon
1931 Collected Poems, by Robert Frost
1930 Selected Poems, by Conrad Aiken
1929 John Brown’s Body, by Stephen Vincent Benet
1928 Tristram, by Edwin Arlington Robinson
1927 Fiddler’s Farewell, by Leonora Speyer
1926 What’s O’Clock, by Amy Lowell
1925 The Man Who Died Twice, by Edwin Arlington Robinson
1924 New Hampshire: A Poem with Notes and Grace Notes, by Robert Frost
1923 The Ballad of the Harp-Weaver, A Few Figs from Thistles, Eight Sonnets, by Edna St. Vincent Millay, in American Poetry, 1922. A Miscellany
1922 Collected Poems, by Edwin Arlington Robinson
1921 No Award
1920 No Award
1919 Corn Huskers, by Carl Sandburg
Old Road to Paradise, by Margaret Widdemer
1918 Love Songs, by Sara Teasdale

As Joseph Pulitzer did not establish funds for Poetry awards,
special awards weren given in 1918 and 1919
by the American Poetry Society

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Desi (
Date: April 06, 2005 08:15AM

thank you Ilza! Nice overview.

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Talia (
Date: April 06, 2005 10:02AM

So of the list, who do you all like the best? I honestly have only read a few of them...who should I look into?

some poems by Kooser
Posted by: ilza (
Date: April 06, 2005 10:07AM

Selecting A Reader

First, I would have her be beautiful,
and walking carefully up on my poetry
at the loneliest moment of an afternoon,
her hair still damp at the neck
from washing it. She should be wearing
a raincoat, an old one, dirty
from not having money enough for the cleaners.
She will take out her glasses, and there
in the bookstore, she will thumb
over my poems, then put the book back
up on its shelf. She will say to herself,
"For that kind of money, I can get
my raincoat cleaned." And she will.

A Birthday Poem

Just past dawn, the sun stands
with its heavy red head
in a black stanchion of trees,
waiting for someone to come
with his bucket
for the foamy white light,
and then a long day in the pasture.
I too spend my days grazing,
feasting on every green moment
till darkness calls,
and with the others
I walk away into the night,
swinging the little tin bell
of my name.

In January

Only one cell in the frozen hive of night
is lit, or so it seems to us:
this Vietnamese café, with its oily light,
its odors whose colorful shapes are like flowers.
Laughter and talking, the tick of chopsticks.
Beyond the glass, the wintry city
creaks like an ancient wooden bridge.
A great wind rushes under all of us.
The bigger the window, the more it trembles.

After Years

Today, from a distance, I saw you
walking away, and without a sound
the glittering face of a glacier
slid into the sea. An ancient oak
fell in the Cumberlands, holding only
a handful of leaves, and an old woman
scattering corn to her chickens looked up
for an instant. At the other side
of the galaxy, a star thirty-five times
the size of our own sun exploded
and vanished, leaving a small green spot
on the astronomer's retina
as he stood on the great open dome
of my heart with no one to tell.

Flying at Night

Above us, stars. Beneath us, constellations.
Five billion miles away, a galaxy dies
like a snowflake falling on water. Below us,
some farmer, feeling the chill of that distant death,
snaps on his yard light, drawing his sheds and barn
back into the little system of his care.
All night, the cities, like shimmering novas,
tug with bright streets at lonely lights like his.


"There's never an end to dust
and dusting," my aunt would say
as her rag, like a thunderhead,
scudded across the yellow oak
of her little house. There she lived
seventy years with a ball
of compulsion closed in her fist,
and an elbow that creaked and popped
like a branch in a storm. Now dust
is her hands and dust her heart.
There's never an end to it.


What once was meant to be a statement—
a dripping dagger held in the fist
of a shuddering heart—is now just a bruise
on a bony old shoulder, the spot
where vanity once punched him hard
and the ache lingered on. He looks like
someone you had to reckon with,
strong as a stallion, fast and ornery,
but on this chilly morning, as he walks
between the tables at a yard sale
with the sleeves of his tight black T-shirt
rolled up to show us who he was,
he is only another old man, picking up
broken tools and putting them back,
his heart gone soft and blue with stories.



Today you would be ninety-seven
if you had lived, and we would all be
miserable, you and your children,
driving from clinic to clinic,
an ancient fearful hypochondriac
and his fretful son and daughter,
asking directions, trying to read
the complicated, fading map of cures.
But with your dignity intact
you have been gone for twenty years,
and I am glad for all of us, although
I miss you every day—the heartbeat
under your necktie, the hand cupped
on the back of my neck, Old Spice
in the air, your voice delighted with stories.
On this day each year you loved to relate
that the moment of your birth
your mother glanced out the window
and saw lilacs in bloom. Well, today
lilacs are blooming in side yards
all over Iowa, still welcoming you.


At the Cancer Clinic

She is being helped toward the open door
that leads to the examining rooms
by two young women I take to be her sisters.
Each bends to the weight of an arm
and steps with the straight, tough bearing
of courage. At what must seem to be
a great distance, a nurse holds the door,
smiling and calling encouragement.
How patient she is in the crisp white sails
of her clothes. The sick woman
peers from under her funny knit cap
to watch each foot swing scuffing forward
and take its turn under her weight.
There is no restlessness or impatience
or anger anywhere in sight. Grace
fills the clean mold of this moment
and all the shuffling magazines grow still.



She was all in black but for a yellow pony tail
that trailed from her cap, and bright blue gloves
that she held out wide, the feathery fingers spread,
as surely she stepped, click-clack, onto the frozen
top of the world. And there, with a clatter of blades,
she began to braid a loose path that broadened
into a meadow of curls. Across the ice she swooped
and then turned back and, halfway, bent her legs
and leapt into the air the way a crane leaps, blue gloves
lifting her lightly, and turned a snappy half-turn
there in the wind before coming down, arms wide,
skating backward right out of that moment, smiling back
at the woman she'd been just an instant before.

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: ilza (
Date: April 06, 2005 10:32AM

I like Maxine Kumin, Anne Sexton (a lot !), Phyllis McGinley,
Elizabeth Bishop, Robert Lowell, Richard Wilbur , Archibald McLeish,
Philip Levine, Louise Gluck, Charles Simic, Sylvia Plath,
Donald Justice Gary Snider, Edna and Sara
a lot that are not in the list
Poets that won more than once :

4 times Robert Frost 1924 – 1931 – 1937 – 1943
3 Edwin Arlington Robinson 1922 – 1925 – 1928
2 Carl Sandburg 1919 – 1951
2 Stephen Vincent Benet 1929 – 1944
2 Archibald McLeish 1933 – 1953
2 Robert Lowell 1947 – 1974
2 Richard Wilbur 1957 – 1989
2 Robert Penn Warren 1958 – 1979

other poems - and a mistake ...
Posted by: ilza (
Date: April 06, 2005 11:05AM

my bad !
re Pulitzer, the book is Delight and Shadows

some of his books ( some fiction and non-fiction):

Winter Morning Walks: 100 Postcards to Jim Harrison (2000)
Weather Central (1994)
One World at a Time (1985)
Sure Signs (1980)
The Poetry Home Repair Manual: Practical Advice For Beginning Poets (2005)
Local Wonders: Seasons in the Bohemian Alps (prose memoir,2004)
Flying at Night: Poems 1965-1985 (2005)
Braided Creek: A Conversation in Poetry (2003) written with fellow poet and longtime friend, Jim Harrison



Slap of the screen door, flat knock
of my grandmother's boxy black shoes
on the wooden stoop, the hush and sweep
of her knob-kneed, cotton-aproned stride
out to the edge and then, toed in
with a furious twist and heave,
a bridge that leaps from her hot red hands
and hangs there shining for fifty years
over the mystified chickens,
over the swaying nettles, the ragweed,
the clay slope down to the creek,
over the redwing blackbirds in the tops
In October

Summer has gone out of the trees
and onto the prairie, a train
of bay mules pulling a hayrack of leaves.
I heard the drover’s whip whirr out and crack.
Behind, in the jabbering, crow-black woods,
lay winter in her silver coffin.

As the President Spoke

As the president spoke, he raised a finger
to emphasize something he said. I’ve forgotten
just what he was saying, but as he spoke
he glanced at that finger as if it were
somebody else’s, and his face went slack and gray,
and he folded his finger back into his hand
and put it down under the podium
along with whatever it meant, with whatever he’d seen
as it spun out and away from that bony axis.

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: lg (
Date: April 06, 2005 12:48PM

Thanks for sharing the list, Ilza. Here's one I hadn't read before:

San Sepolcro
© Jorie Graham

In this blue light
   I can take you there,
snow having made me
   a world of bone
seen through to. This
   is my house,

my section of Etruscan
   wall, my neighbor's
lemontrees, and, just below
   the lower church,
the airplane factory.
   A rooster

crows all day from mist
   outside the walls.
There's milk on the air,
   ice on the oily
lemonskins. How clean
   the mind is,

holy grave. It is this girl
   by Piero
della Francesca, unbuttoning
   her blue dress,
her mantle of weather,
   to go into

labor. Come, we can go in.
   It is before
the birth of god. No one
   has risen yet
to the museums, to the assembly

and wings--to the open air
   market. This is
what the living do: go in.
   It's a long way.
And the dress keeps opening
   from eternity

to privacy, quickening.
   Inside, at the heart,
is tragedy, the present moment
   forever stillborn,
but going in, each breath
   is a button

coming undone, something terribly
finding all of the stops.


Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Hugh Clary (
Date: April 06, 2005 12:51PM

Wow, great stuff. Simple language yet elegantly put. I see my local library has some half dozen books by Mr K., including D&S which I have not read. Reserving copies even as I type.

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Veronika (
Date: April 06, 2005 02:52PM

Thank you Ilsa for posting the poems and the list.

Louise Gluck is also one of my favourites.

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Desi (
Date: April 06, 2005 04:01PM

here's a link to the picture discussed in the poem san sepolcro posted by lg:


Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: drpeternsz (
Date: April 06, 2005 07:27PM

After Years

Today, from a distance, I saw you
walking away, and without a sound
the glittering face of a glacier
slid into the sea. An ancient oak
fell in the Cumberlands, holding only
a handful of leaves, and an old woman
scattering corn to her chickens looked up
for an instant. At the other side
of the galaxy, a star thirty-five times
the size of our own sun exploded
and vanished, leaving a small green spot
on the astronomer's retina
as he stood on the great open dome
of my heart with no one to tell.

Ted Kooser

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: lg (
Date: April 07, 2005 02:35AM

The Avenue
Copyright © Paul Muldoon

Now that we've come to the end
I've been trying to piece it together,
Not that distance makes anything clearer.
It began in the half-light
While we walked through the dawn chorus
After a party that lasted all night,
With the blackbird, the wood-pigeon,
The song-thrush taking a bludgeon
To a snail, our taking each other's hand
As if the whole world lay before us.


Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Marian-NYC (
Date: April 07, 2005 01:05PM

Hey, gang - the next time someone asks, "What poetry should I read?" we can refer him or her to this list as a resource!

Thanks, Ilza!

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Hugh Clary (
Date: April 08, 2005 02:45PM

[] />
Click on Listen to hear him reading "That was I". I always choose Windows Media Player, since every time I use RealPlayer, I find they have inserted a command into my registry that I then have to remove, Grrr.

Re: Pulitzer 2005
Posted by: Hugh Clary (
Date: April 08, 2005 03:23PM

More of his stuff here, some dupes, some different:


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