W.S. Merwin was born in New York City in 1927 and was United States Poet Laureate in 2010. His first book of poetry, A Mask for Janus (1952), was selected by W.H. Auden for the Yale Younger Poets Prize. He has won many awards, as well as fellowships from the Rockefeller and the Guggenheim Foundations and the National Endowment for the Arts. W.S. Merwin has lived in Hawaii since 1976.
The Moon before Morning is a love letter composed in a stunning rush of memory. Answering the call set forth in his Pulitzer Prize–winning The Shadow of Sirius, W.S. Merwin extends the emotional and intellectual reach of that collection with passionate reverence for the natural world, bittersweet reflection on time’s irrevocable ravages, and equanimity informed by a lifetime of writing and practiced contemplation.
“W.S. Merwin’s legacy is unquestionably secure: his best and most fierce poems are moody, visionary compositions that dive into the unconscious and the seeds of existence with an inwardness and scrutiny unique in American poetry.”
“Merwin’s masterfully refined, meditative poems stem from his dwelling mindfully in one beloved place and handling words as though they are seeds, flowers, stones, and water… Merwin has attained a transcendent and transformative elevation of beaming perception, exquisite balance, and clarifying beauty.”
Copper Canyon Press