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About this poet

Born in Suffern, New York, on September 9, 1942, Linda Gregg grew up in Marin County, California. She received her BA and MA from San Francisco State University.

Her first book of poems, Too Bright to See, was published by Graywolf Press in 1981. She went on to publish several collections of poetry, including All of It Singing: New and Selected Poems (Graywolf Press, 2008), the 2009 recipient of the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize and winner of the Poetry Society of America’s William Carlos Williams Award; In the Middle Distance (Graywolf Press, 2006); Things and Flesh (Graywolf Press, 1999); and Alma (Random House, 1985).

About Gregg's work, the poet W. S. Merwin  said, "I have loved Linda Gregg's poems since I first read them. They are original in the way that really matters: they speak clearly of their source. They are inseparable from the surprising, unrolling, eventful, pure current of their language, and they convey at once the pain of individual loss, a steady and utterly personal radiance."

Gregg's honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Lannan Literary Foundation Fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts grant, a Whiting Writer's Award, as well as multiple Pushcart Prizes. She was the 2003 winner of the Sara Teasdale Award and the 2006 PEN/Voelcker Award winner for Poetry.

She taught at the University of Iowa, Columbia University, the University of California at Berkeley, and Princeton University. She died on March 20, 2019.

Bibliography

All of It Singing: New and Selected Poems (Graywolf Press, 2008)
In the Middle Distance(Graywolf Press, 2006)
Things and Flesh (Graywold Press, 1999)
Chosen by the Lion (Graywolf Press, 1994)
The Sacraments of Desire (Graywolf Press, 1991)
Alma (Random House, 1985)
Too Bright to See (Graywolf Press, 1981)

We Manage Most When We Manage Small

What things are steadfast? Not the birds.
Not the bride and groom who hurry
in their brevity to reach one another.
The stars do not blow away as we do.
The heavenly things ignite and freeze.
But not as my hair falls before you.
Fragile and momentary, we continue.
Fearing madness in all things huge
and their requiring. Managing as thin light
on water. Managing only greetings
and farewells. We love a little, as the mice
huddle, as the goat leans against my hand.
As the lovers quickening, riding time.
Making safety in the moment. This touching
home goes far. This fishing in the air.

From All of It Singing. Copyright © 2008 by Linda Gregg. Used with permission of Graywolf Press.

From All of It Singing. Copyright © 2008 by Linda Gregg. Used with permission of Graywolf Press.

Linda Gregg

Linda Gregg

Born in 1942, Linda Gregg was the author of several collections of poetry, including All of It Singing: New and Selected Poems (Graywolf Press, 2008), which received the 2009 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize.

by this poet

poem
Eight deer on the slope
in the summer morning mist.
The night sky blue.
Me like a mare let out to pasture.
The Tao does not console me. 
I was given the Way 
in the milk of childhood. 
Breathing it waking and sleeping.
But now there is no amazing smell
of sperm on my thighs,
no spreading it on my stomach
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