Komunyakaa wins Lilly Poetry Prize
Posted June 15, 2001; 11:08 a.m.
Komunyakaa, professor of the Council of the Humanities and creative writing, has been awarded this year's Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize. The $100,000 award is one of the largest poetry prizes in the United States and recognizes extraordinary literary accomplishment.
Joseph Parisi, editor of Poetry magazine and chair of the selection committee for the prize, said, "In a period when many writers of narrow focus have coasted along by composing variations on one or two themes - and some have even built careers with barely a single new idea to speak of - Yusef Komunyakaa has impressed us again and again by his breadth of vision and the originality of his ever-evolving style. From the start, he dazzled the cognoscenti with his prodigious gifts for image-making and story-telling in poems of unusually dramatic, or rather, cinematic impact."
Komunyakaa won the Pulitzer Prize in 1994 for "Neon Vernacular: New and Selected Poems." His most recent work, published this year, is titled "Pleasure Dome: New and Collected Poems, 1975-99."
Contact: Marilyn Marks (609) 258-3601