ornate warble of meadowlarks
burbling in melodic veronicas,
ribboning the spires, buttes, pinnacles,
and gullies of sedimentary stone,
sage and sweet grass smudging the still-cool air
lush-bellied manatees of clouds somersault
above an inching
Lee Ann Roripaugh was born in Laramie, Wyoming, in 1965. She holds an MM in music history, a BM in piano performance, and an MFA in creative writing, all from Indiana University.
Her first volume of poetry, Beyond Heart Mountain (Penguin Books, 1999), was selected by Ishmael Reed for the National Poetry Series. She is also the author of Dandarians (Milkweed Editions, 2014), On the Cusp of a Dangerous Year (Southern Illinois University Press, 2009), and Year of the Snake (Southern Illinois University Press, 2004), winner of the Association of Asian American Studies Book Award in Poetry/Prose.
Roripaugh’s other honors include an Academy of American Poets Prize, an AWP Intro Award, and the 1995 Randall Jarrell International Poetry Prize.
In his review of On the Cusp of a Dangerous Year, Ray Gonzalez wrote, "Lee Ann Roripaugh’s poems create a true book of seeing. Her poems show us the way toward redemption as they fill these pages with a life of discovery and meaning.”
In 2015, Roripaugh was appointed to the position of South Dakota poet laureate. She teaches creative writing at the University of South Dakota and is the editor of the South Dakota Review.
Dandarians (Milkweed Editions, 2014)
On the Cusp of a Dangerous Year (Southern Illinois University Press, 2009)
Year of the Snake (Southern Illinois University Press, 2004)
Beyond Heart Mountain (Penguin Books, 1999)