Mark Strand Poet Laureate Dies


It has been confirmed by his daughter, Jessica, that Mark Strand, the Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize honoree has died at age 80. He passed away in Brooklyn at his daughter’s apaartment.The cause of death, according to the initial report is complications from liposarcoma, which is a rare cancer affecting the fat cells of the body.

Strand became United States Poet Laureate in 1990,  and was awarded his Pulitzer Prize in 1999. He is best known for the collection which won him that award, Blizzard of One, but was prolific in his writing and varied in the expression of his talents. He spent some time writing children’s book after becoming temporarily frustrated and disillusioned with his poetry. His public career as a poet began with the publication of his first collection in 1964, Sleeping With One Eye Open and has touched the nation and the world for decades since. Strand had an introspective, meditative style described as a product of the “divided self” and which resonated with the American people in an intimate way. He is survived by his partner Maricruz Bilbao, a daughter and son, a brother and sister, and a grandson.

By Jim Malone


Image courtesy of Casa de America – Flickr License

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