Open main menu

Louise Elisabeth Glück (born April 22, 1943) is an American poet. She was appointed Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress in 2003, after serving as a Special Bicentennial Consultant three years prior in 2000.[1] She won the National Book Award for Poetry in 2014 for Faithful and Virtuous Night.

Louise Glück
Glück c. 1977
Glück c. 1977
BornLouise Elisabeth Glück
(1943-04-22) April 22, 1943 (age 76)
New York City, U.S.
Alma materColumbia University
Notable awards


Early lifeEdit

Louise Glück was born in New York City of Hungarian Jewish heritage. She grew up on Long Island. Her father, Daniel, an immigrant from Hungary, helped invent and market the X-Acto Knife.[2] Due to anorexia, Glück left George W. Hewlett High School, in Hewlett, New York, before graduating and began psychoanalysis, which, she said, taught her how to think.[3] She briefly attended Sarah Lawrence College but once again withdrew because of her anorexia. Glück later attended, but did not graduate from, Columbia University.[4] She studied writing with Leonie Adams and then with Stanley Kunitz, who was a significant mentor in her development as a poet.[5][6]


Glück won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1993 for her collection The Wild Iris. Her latest collection, Faithful and Virtuous Night, was published in September 2014 and won the National Book Award for Poetry.[7] She was the recipient of the National Book Critics Circle Award (Triumph of Achilles), the Academy of American Poets Prize (Firstborn), and numerous Guggenheim fellowships. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and was previously a Senior Lecturer in English at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Glück currently teaches at Yale University, where she is the Rosencranz Writer in Residence, and in the Creative Writing Program of Boston University. She has also been a member of the faculty of the University of Iowa and taught at Goddard College in Vermont.[8]

Glück is the author of twelve books of poetry, including A Village Life (2009); Averno (2006), which was a finalist for The National Book Award; The Seven Ages (2001); Vita Nova (1999), which was awarded The New Yorker's Book Award in Poetry; Meadowlands (1996); The Wild Iris (1992), which received the Pulitzer Prize and the Poetry Society of America's William Carlos Williams Award; Ararat (1990), which received the Library of Congress's Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry; and The Triumph of Achilles (1985), which received the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Boston Globe Literary Press Award, and the Poetry Society of America's Melville Kane Award. The First Four Books of Poems (1999) collects her early poetry.[citation needed]

Glück has also published a collection of essays, Proofs and Theories: Essays on Poetry (1994), which won the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for First Nonfiction. Sarabande Books published in chapbook form a new, six-part poem, October, in 2004. In 2001, Yale University awarded her its Bollingen Prize in Poetry, given biennially for a poet's lifetime achievement in his or her art. Her other honors include the Lannan Literary Award for Poetry, the Sara Teasdale Memorial Prize (Wellesley, 1986), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Anniversary Medal (2000), and fellowships from the Guggenheim and Rockefeller foundations and from the National Endowment for the Arts. "A Village Life" (2009) was nominated for the Griffin Poetry Prize.[citation needed]

She is a member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, and in 1999 was elected a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. In 2003, she was named as a judge for the Yale Series of Younger Poets and served in that position through 2010. Glück was appointed the US Poet Laureate from 2003–2004, succeeding Billy Collins.[citation needed]

Awards and honorsEdit


Poetry collectionsEdit

  • Firstborn (1968)
  • The House on Marshland (1975)
  • The Garden (1976)
  • Descending Figure (1980)
  • The Triumph of Achilles (1985)
  • Ararat (Ecco Press, 1990)
  • The Wild Iris (1992)
  • Mock Orange (1993)
  • The First Four Books of Poems (1995)
  • Meadowlands (1997)
  • Vita Nova (1999)
  • The Seven Ages (2001)
  • Averno (2006) Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • A Village Life (2009) (shortlisted for the 2010 International Griffin Poetry Prize) Farrar, Straus, Giroux
  • Poems: 1962-2012, Farrar, Straus, Giroux
  • Faithful and Virtuous Night, Farrar, Straus, Giroux (2014)

List of poemsEdit

Title Year First published Reprinted/collected
An adventure 2013 "An adventure". The New Yorker. 89 (7): 58–59. April 1, 2013. Retrieved 2016-01-04.


  • Proofs and Theories: Essays on Poetry (1994)
  • American Originality: Essays on Poetry (2017)


  1. ^ "Former Poet Laureate Louise Glück". Library of Congress. 2009. Retrieved 2009-01-01.
  2. ^ "Poet Laureate". PostClassic. 2003-08-31. Retrieved 2018-03-13.
  3. ^ Gluck, Louise (2012). ""A Voice of Spiritual Prophecy". Louise Gluck Interview. Academy of Achievement, Washington D.C., Oct 27, 2012". Academy of Achievement.
  4. ^ "Louise Glück (b. 1943)". Columbia Granger's World of Poetry Online. (accessed April 12, 2012).
  5. ^ Chiasson, Dan (November 4, 2012). "The Body Artist". The New Yorker (November 12, 2012).
  6. ^ Gluck, Louise (December 1, 1995). Proofs and Theories. Ecco. ISBN 9780880014427.
  7. ^ "Louise Glück Wins 2014 National Book Award in Poetry". 2019-08-30.
  8. ^ Archived from the original on 2010-04-15. Retrieved 2010-04-18. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ "President Obama to Award 2015 National Humanities Medals".
  10. ^ "Louise Glück Wins 2014 National Book Award in Poetry". 2019-08-30.
  11. ^ Staff writer (April 19, 2013). "Announcing the 2012 Los Angeles Times Book Prize winners". LA Times. Retrieved April 21, 2013.
  12. ^ "Golden Plate Awardees of the American Academy of Achievement". American Academy of Achievement.

External linksEdit