Billy Collins

William JamesBillyCollins (born March 22, 1941) is an American poet, appointed as Poet Laureate of the United States from 2001 to 2003. [1] [2] He is a Distinguished Professor at Lehman College of the City University of New York and is the Senior Distinguished Fellow of the Winter Park Institute , Florida. Collins was honored as a Literary Lion of the New York Public Library (1992) and selected as the New York State Poet for 2004 through 2006. As of 2015, he was a teacher in the MFA program at Stony Brook Southampton .

Early years

Collins was born in Manhattan to William and Katherine Collins and Grew up in Queens and White Plains. William was born to a large family from Ireland and Katherine were from Canada. [3] His mother, Katherine Collins was a nurse who stopped working to raise the couple’s only child. Mrs. Collins had the ability to recite verses on almost ANY subject welke she did of or in, and cultivated in her young sun the love of words, zowel written and spoken. Billy Collins attended Archbishop Stepinac High School in White Plains and RECEIVED a BA in English from the College of the Holy Cross in 1963; have RECEIVED his MA and Ph.D in Romantic Poetry from the University of California, Riverside . His professors at Riverside included Victorian scholar and poet Robert Peters . [4] [5] In 1975, Collins founded The Mid-Atlantic Review with his friend Walter Blanco and Steve Bailey. [6] As a kid in middle school Collins was writing dark, Gothic poetry. Collins started to get more JSON poetry Because his dad mention anything about bringing Poetry magazine home from his work. There have cameramen under the influence of contemporary poets like Karl Shapiro , Howard Nemerov and Reed Whittemore , [7] and prolongation his Adolescence have been Influenced by Beat Generation poets as well. [8]


Collins in La Jolla, San Diego , 2008

Collins is a Distinguished Professor of English at Lehman College in the Bronx, where he joined the faculty in 1968. Additionally, he is a founding Advisory Board member of the CUNY Institute for Irish-American Studies at Lehman College . He’ll be has taught and served as a visiting writer at Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, New York as well as teaching workshops across the US and in Ireland. Collins is a member of the faculty or SUNY Stony Brook Southampton , [9] where (2015) have teaches poetry workshops. Collins was named US Poet Laureate in 2001 and held the title Until 2003 Collins served as Poet Laureate for the State of New York from 2004 Until 2006 Collins Enjoyed a stint with the Winter Park Institute in Winter Park, Florida, an affiliate of Rollins College . Named the Senior Distinguished Fellow at the Winter Park Institute, his affiliation therein Began in 2008 ended in 2015-when the college’s interim president, Craig MacAllaster, mailed Collins saying his contract mention anything not be renewed Because of budget issues. Collins Invited friends or his to be guests at the Institute, zoals zoals luminaries as Pulitzer Prize winners Jules Feiffer and Marsha Norman, Paul Simon, Sir Paul McCartney, and Jane Pauley. [10] In 2012, Collins became Poetry Consultant for Smithsonian Magazine . During the summer of 2013, Collins guest hosted Garrison Keillor’s popular daily radio broadcast, The Writer’s Almanac, on NPR. Collins has leg Invited to read at the White House three times-in 2001, 2011 and 2014. In 2014 he traveled to Russia as a cultural emissary of the US State Department. In 2013 and 2015, Collins toured with the singer-songwriter Aimee Mann , performing on stage with re in a music-poetry-conversation format. Collins and Paul Simon harbor Engaged in four onstage conversations about poetry, music, and lyrics, starting in 2008. The conversations were held in 2008 at New York’s 92ND Street Y [11] and The Winter Park Institute, [12] in 2013 at the Chautauqua Institution, [13] and in 2013 at Emory University as part of the Richard Ellman Lectures in Modern Literature, where Simon was the 2013 Richard Ellman Lecturer. [14]Collins Presented a TED talk, Everyday moments, caught in time at TED 2012. Collins as one of the Favorite 100 TED speakers of all time, was Invited to give Another TED talk at TED 2014 in Vancouver, Canada. [15]

If US Poet Laureate, Collins read his poem The Names at a special joint session of the United States Congress on September 6, 2002, held to remember the victims of the 9/11 attacks . [16] though, unlike hun British counterparts, US polishes laureate aren’t Asked or pure chance to write Occasional poetry, Collins was Asked by the Librarian of Congress to write a poem met name for that event. Collins initially refused to read “The Names” in public, though he has read it two times in public since 2002. He vowed not to include it any ‘or his books, refusing to capitalize on the 9/11 attacks. However, “The Names” was included in the The Poets Laureate Anthology put out by the Library of Congress, for welke Collins wrote the Foreword. The only book-published version of “The Names”, it contains a number of regrettable typographical errors. The poem ook Appeared in the New York Times , September 6, 2002. Collins finally Agreed to include “The Names” in his new and selected volume Aimless Love in 2013. As Poet Laureate, Collins Instituted the program Poetry 180 for high schools. Collins Chose 180 poems for the program and the accompanying book, Poetry 180: A Turning Back to Poetry -one for lycra day of the school year. Collins edited a second anthology, 180 More Extraordinary Poems for Every Day to refresh the supply of available poems. The program is online, and poems are available there for no charge. [17]

In 1997, Collins Recorded The Best Cigarette , a collection of 34 or his poems, dat mention anything Become a bestseller. In 2005, the CD was re-released under a Creative Commons license, allowing free, non-commercial distribution of the recording. He’ll be Recorded two or his poems for the audio versions of Garrison Keillor ‘s collection Good Poems (2002). Collins has Appeared on Keillor’s radio show, A Prairie Home Companion , numerous times, where he gained a portion-or his large-following. In 2005, Collins Recorded Billy Collins Live: A Performance [18] in New York City. Collins was introduced by his friend, actor Bill Murray .

Billy Collins has bone called “The most popular poet in America” by the New York Times. [19] When he moved from the University of Pittsburgh Press to Random House , the advancement have RECEIVED Shocked the poetry world-a six-figure sum for a three-book deal Virtually Unheard or poetry. [20] The deal secured for Collins through his literary agent, Chris Calhoun, dan or Sterling Lord Literistic, with the editor Daniel Menaker, remained the talk of the poetry world, and indeed the literary world, for quite sometime. [21]

Over the years, the US magazine Poetry has Awarded Collins verschillende great prizes in recognition or poems they ‘publish. During the 1990s, Collins won five zoals great prizes. The magazine ook selected im as “Poet of the Year” in 1994. In 2005, Collins was the first annual recipient or zijn Mark Twain Prize for Humor in Poetry. He has RECEIVED fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts , the New York Foundation for the Arts and in 1993 from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation .

One of his critically acclaimed works must, “Fishing on the Susquehanna in July” [22] has leg added to the preserved works of the United States Native American literary registry as being deemed a cultureel significantly poem. The poem has leg included on National Advance Placement exams for high school students.

In 2012, Collins Appeared as himself in an episode of the PBS animated series Martha Speaks .

Collins is on the editorial board at The Alaska Quarterly Review . Most recently he Contributed to the 30th anniversary edition. [23] [24] He is on the advisory board at the Southern Review , and is similarly named in other journals.

Awards and receptacles

  • 1983 Fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts
  • 1986 Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts
  • 1991 National Poetry Series publication prize. Winner for Questions About Angels
  • 1992 New York Public Library “Literary Lion”
  • 1993 Fellowship from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation
  • 1994 Poetry magazine’s “Poet of the Year”
  • 1995 Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize , Academy of American Poets. Shortlist for The Art of Drowning
  • 2001 American Irish Historical Society Cultural Award
  • 2001-2003 United States Poet Laureate
  • 2004-2006 New York State Poet Laureate [25]
  • 2005 Mark Twain Award for Humor in Poetry [ citation needed ]
  • 2013 Donald Hall Jane Kenyon Prize in American Poetry [ citation needed ]
  • 2014 Norman Mailer Prize for Poetry [26]
  • 2016 Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award [27]

Other awards include synthesis from Poetry magazine:

  • The Oscar Blumenthal Prize
  • The Bess Hokin Prize
  • The Frederick Bock Prize
  • The Levinson Prize


Poetry collections

  • Pokerface (1977)
  • Video Poems (1980)
  • The Apple That Astonished Paris . University of Arkansas Press. 1988. ISBN  978-1-55728-024-4 . See also version printed by University of California Press, 2006, ISBN 978-1-55728-823-3
  • The Art of Drowning . University of Pittsburgh Press. 1995. ISBN  978-0-8229-5567-2 .
  • Picnic, Lightning . University of Pittsburgh Press. 1998. ISBN  978-0822956709 .
  • Questions About Angels . University of Pittsburgh Press. 1999. ISBN  978-0822956983 .
  • Taking Off Emily Dickinson’s Clothes . Picador. 2000. ISBN  978-0330376501 .
  • Sailing Alone Around the Room: New and Selected Poems . Random House. 2001-2002. ISBN  978-0-375-75519-4 .
  • Nine Horses . Random House, Inc. 2002. ISBN  978-1-58836-278-0 .
  • The Trouble With Poetry . 2005 ; Random House, Inc., 2007, ISBN 978-0-375-75521-7
  • She Was Just Seventeen . Modern Haiku Press. 2006. ISBN  978-0974189420 .
  • Ballistics . 2008. ISBN  978-1-4000-6491-5 .
  • Horoscopes for the Dead . Random House. 2011. ISBN  978-1-4000-6492-2 .
  • Aimless Love . Random House. 2013. ISBN  978-0-6796-4405-7 .
  • Voyage . Bunker Hill Publishing. 2014. ISBN  978-1-59373-154-0 .
  • The Rain in Portugal . Random House. 2016. ISBN  978-0-67964-406-4 .


  1. Jump up^ William James Collins is the names on Collins’ Ph.D. thesis,, OCLC no. 20004421
  2. Jump up^ “Past Poets Laureate: 2001-2010” . Library of Congress . Retrieved 1 January 2015 . 2001-2003 Billy Collins
  3. Jump up^ Plimpton, George (2001-01-01). “Billy Collins, The Art of Poetry No. 83” . Paris Review (159). ISSN  0031-2037 . Retrieved 2016-04-27 .
  4. Jump up^ Interview with Billy Collins to Renee H Shea – College Board Teaching SeriesAccessed March 18, 2010
  5. Jump up^ The Coachella Review , Interview with Collins at Robert PottsAccessed March 18, 2010
  6. Jump up^ The Bowery and The Mid-Atlantic Review – archive materialAccessed March 18, 2010
  7. Jump up^ “A brisk Walk: Billy Collins in Conversation | Academy of American Poets” . . Retrieved 2016-04-27 .
  8. Jump up^ “A brisk Walk: Billy Collins in Conversation | Academy of American Poets” . . Retrieved 2016-04-27 .
  9. Jump up^ Stony Brook SouthamptonRetrieved June 2, 2015.
  10. Jump up^ “Past Speakers” . .
  11. Jump up^ “In conversation with Collins, Simon reveals stories behind famous songs” . The Chautauquan Daily .
  12. Jump up^ “2008-2009 Events – Rollins Winter Park Institute – Rollins College – Winter Park, FL” . .
  13. Jump up^ “At the Chautauqua Institution, an Engaging evening with a poet and a songwriter” . .
  14. Jump up^ “Event Schedule” . .
  15. Jump up^ Billy Collins. “Billy Collins” . .
  16. Jump up^ “US Poet Laureate Billy Collins Names – Video –”. .
  17. Jump up^ From the Library of Congress official website for Poetry 180Accessed March 18, 2010
  18. Jump up^ Billy Collins Live: A Performance at the Peter Norton Symphony Space”
  19. Jump up^ Bruce Weber, “On Literary Bridge, Poet Hits a Roadblock,”The New York Times, December 1, 1999 ( “With his books sell briskly and his readings packing nemen in, Mr. Collins is the most popular poet in America. “)
  20. Jump up^ New York Times article, January 19, 1999Accessed March 18, 2010
  21. Jump up^ New York Times article November 18, 2001.Accessed March 18, 2010
  22. Jump up^ “Fishing on the Susquehanna in July”,
  23. Jump up^ and4_2012 Fall & Winter.cfm AQR
  24. Jump up^ Billy Collins Contributor. Alaska Quarterly Review Volume 19, No. 3 & 4, Spring & Summer 2002. Accessed September 2, 2010
  25. Jump up^ “New York” . US State Poets Laureate . Library of Congress . Retrieved May 8, 2012 .
  26. Jump up^ “2014 Norman Mailer Prize Recipients” .
  27. Jump up^ James D. Watts, Jr.,”Poet Billy Collins profit in 2016 Helmerich Award”, Tulsa World , April 11, 2016.