A. R. Ammons
Archie Randolph Ammons was born in 1926 in Whiteville, North Carolina, and began writing poetry during World War II while serving aboard a U. S. Navy destroyer in the South Pacific. After the war, he held several jobs, including a position as an executive in his father’s glass manufacture company, until he began teaching at Cornell University in 1964. At Cornell, he was Goldwin Smith Professor of Poetry until his retirement in 1998, and thereafter professor emeritus until his death in 2001. Ammons wrote nearly thirty books of poetry, earning the National Book Critics Circle Award, the Library of Congress’s Rebekah Johnson Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry, the Robert Frost Medal, a Guggenheim fellowship, and a MacArthur Prize fellowship. He was twice awarded the National Book Award in Poetry, first in 1973 for Collected Poems, 1951-1971, and again in 1993 for Garbage.