Daniel Hoffman

Judged: Poem of the Decade: May 2000-Apr 2010

Daniel Hoffman

Daniel Hoffman served as Poet Laureate (the appointment then called Consultant in Poetry of The Library of Congress) in 1973·1974. He was W. H. Auden’s choice for the Yale Series of Younger Poets, and his award-winning first book of verse, An Armada of Thirty Whales, appeared in 1954. Among its dozen successors were his book-length poem, Brotherly Love (1981); on William Penn, our neglected Founding Father, it was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics’ Circle Award; Beyond Silence: Selected Shorter Poems appeared in 2003; and, most recently, The Whole Nine Yards: Longer Poems in 2009.

Best known of his several critical books is another nominee for the National Book Award, Poe Poe Poe Poe Poe Poe Poe (1972). He has also published studies of Stephen Crane, Yeats, Faulkner, and contemporary American poetry. Among his awards are fellowships from the Guggenheim and Ingram Merill Foundations and the NEH. ln 2005 he received the Arthur Rense prize for “an exceptional poet” from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; and, in 2003 from The Sewanee Review, the Aiken·Taylor Award for Contemporary American Poetry. In 1980 he was given the Memorial Medal of the Magyar P.E,N. for his translations of contemporary Hungarian poets.

Hoffman taught at Columbia, Swarthmore, and the University of Pennsylvania, where he is the Felix E. Schelling Professor of English Emeritus. From l988-1999, he was Poet in Residence of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, where, with a rotating board of eminent poets and writers, he administered The American Poets’ Corner. He was married to the late and editor Elizabeth McFarland; they had two children. He lives in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania and on Cape Rosier in Maine.


  • January 2019 Winners

    • First Place

      How the Wind Works
      by Alison Armstrong-Webber
      The Waters

      Second Place

      Sleep Walker
      by Brenda Levy Tate
      PenShells

      Third Place

      The Woman Who Grew up in My House Finds Me on Facebook and Comes to Take a Look Around
      by Antonia Clark
      The Waters

  • December 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      Tires
      by Kenny A. Chaffin
      Babilu

      Second Place

      Scouring Pots While the World Ends
      by Elizabeth Koopman
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Third Place

      Poetry in the Cultural Revolution
      by Bob Bradshaw
      The Waters