Mark Strand

Poet and Writer Class of 1987
location icon Location
Salt Lake City, Utah
age iconAge
53 at time of award
age iconDate Deceased
November 29, 2014
area of focus iconArea of Focus

About Mark's Work

Mark Strand is a poet and an art critic, whose work is distinctive for its deeply inward sense of language. 

His poetry is characterized by a taut, forthright, and elegant style.  Sometimes filled with surreal imagery, his verse contains dreamlike images possessing a haunting vividness.  Strand’s volumes often reflect autobiographical themes, with reflections on his own mortality and poems written for his children.  His books of poetry include Sleeping with One Eye Open (1964), Reasons for Moving (1968), Darker (1970), The Story of Our Lives (1973), The Late Hour (1978), Selected Poems (1980), The Continuous Life (1990), Dark Harbor (1993), and Blizzard of One (1998).  In addition to his poetry, he has also published several books of translation, essays, children’s books, and a book of short stories.


He has held teaching positions at many institutions including the University of Iowa (1962-65), the University of Utah (1981-93), and the Johns Hopkins University (1994-97).  He served as the Poet Laureate of the United States (1990-1991).  Strand is the Andrew MacLeish Distinguished Service Professor in the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago, a post he assumed in 1997.   

Strand received a B.A. (1957) from Antioch College, a B.F.A. (1959) from Yale University, and an M.A. (1962) from the University of Iowa. 

Last updated January 1, 2005.

Published on July 1, 1987

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