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.


  • August 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      The World Is Moist in the Morning
      by Terry Ofner
      The Waters

      Second Place

      My Epitaph
      by Guy Kettelhack
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Third Place

      I kissed a tree
      by Alison Armstrong-Webber
      The Waters

  • July 2018 Winners

    • First Place

      The First Time I Drank With My Father
      by Ken Ashworth
      The Waters

      Second Place

      My Bicycle
      by Andrew Dufresne
      Wild Poetry Forum

      Third Place

      J. Alfred Prufrock Searches for Mrs. Right
      by Laurie Byro
      Babilu