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Biography Maxine Kumin

U.S. Consultant in Poetry, 1981-1982

Maxine Cumin, U.S. Consultant in Poetry, 1981-1982. Photo credit: Susannah Colt.

Maxine Kumin was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1925. She was the author of 18 poetry collections, including Up Country: Poems of New England (1972), which won the Pulitzer Prize; Looking for Luck (1992), winner of the Poets’ Prize; and Where I Live: New and Selected Poems (2011). She also published more than 20 children’s books, a memoir, five novels, several books of essays, and a collection of short stories. Kumin’s honors included the Aiken Taylor Award for Modern Poetry, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award, the Levinson Prize, the Eunice Tietjens Memorial Prize, the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize, and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Academy of American Poets, and the National Council on the Arts. She served as Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 1981-1982 and as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets from 1995-1998. Kumin taught writing at Princeton University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Columbia University, and Tufts University. Maxine Kumin died in 2014. 

Audio Recordings of Maxine Kumin

Selected Works at the Library of Congress