C.D. Wright

Forrest Gander

C.D. Wright (1949–2016), one of her generation’s most popular, formally restless, and influential poets, was recognized with scores of major awards including fellowships from the MacArthur, the Lila Wallace, the Lannan, and the Guggenheim foundations. She received a fellowship from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts which, after her death, honored her by launching a new award in her name. Wright was raised in the Ozarks and came to live with Forrest Gander in San Francisco, Eureka Springs, Dolores Hidalgo, Mexico, and Providence. She published sixteen collections of poetry and prose and served on the faculty at Brown University for decades. Her book One With Others won the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize. Reviewing Rising, Falling, Hovering, The New York Times noted: “C.D. Wright belongs to a school of exactly one.” Wright re-energized documentary poetics in English with major, book-length works such as One Big Self. She was an energetic advocate for other writers; she edited Lost Roads Publishers, a book press that published more than forty writers. A noted collaborator with other artists, Wright created a large-scale multi-media installation, “a walk-in book of Arkansas,” as a touring exhibition.


Awards and Honors

Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize, 2011

National Book Critics Circle Award, 2010

Finalist, National Book Award, 2010

Griffin International Poetry Prize,  2009

Robert Creeley Award, 2005

Macarthur Foundation Fellowship, 2004

Poet Laureate of Rhode Island, 1994-99

Whiting Award, 1989

John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, 1987