Ruth Stone

Ruth Stone (1915–2011) was born in Virginia. She is the author of thirteen books of poetry, including In the Next Galaxy, which won the 2002 National Book Award, and her collected poems, What Love Comes To, which was a finalist for the 2009 Pulitzer Prize. Her 1999 collection Ordinary Words won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 1999. She is the recipient of many additional honors, including two Guggenheim Fellowships (one of which roofed her house). In 1959, after her husband committed suicide, she was forced to raise three daughters alone. (As she has pointed out, her poems are “love poems, all written to a dead man” who forced her to “reside in limbo” with her daughters.) For twenty years she traveled the U.S., teaching creative writing at many universities, including the University of Illinois, University of Wisconsin, Indiana University, UC Davis, Brandeis, and finally settling at SUNY Binghamton. She lived in Vermont until her death at the age of 96.

Awards and Honors

Finalist, Pulitzer Prize, 2009

Paterson Poetry Prize, 2009

National Book Award, 2002

Wallace Stevens Award, Academy of American Poets, 2002

National Book Critics Circle Award, 1999

Eric Mathieu King Award, Academy of American Poets, 1999

Whiting Award, 1986

Shelley Memorial Award, Poetry Society of America, 1965

Delmore Schwartz Award

Walter Cerf Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts

John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowships