William Stafford


  • William Stafford, 1990-1991 Mackey Chair

William Stafford (1914-1993) was one of the best-loved poets in the United States, and he is the father of poet and essayist Kim Stafford. His poem, Traveling through the Dark, received a 1962 National Book Award, and is anthologized internationally. He was appointed the twentieth Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress in 1970. Stafford was a close friend and collaborator with poet Robert Bly. He was a frequent contributor to magazines and anthologies and eventually published fifty-seven volumes of poetry. James Dickey called Stafford one of those poets “who pour out rivers of ink, all on good poems.” He kept a daily journal for 50 years, and composed nearly 22,000 poems, of which roughly 3,000 were published.

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