Biography of Ed Roberson


Biography of Ed Roberson


Ed Roberson


Biography of Ed Roberson, attending poet at The New Nature Writing, Lake Forest College's 2012 Literary Festival.


Ed Roberson







Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania



Biographical Text

Ed Roberson is the author of eight books of poetry, including Voices Cast Out to Talk Us In, a winner of the Iowa Poetry Prize, and a recent collection, The New Wing of the Labyrinth (Singing Horse Press, 2010). His Atmosphere Conditions was selected for the National Poetry Series and nominated for the Lenore Marshall Award from the Academy of American Poets. His latest book, To See the Earth Before the End of the World, is forthcoming from Wesleyan University Press in fall 2010. A recipient of the Lila Wallace Writers' Award and the 2008 Shelley Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, he is Distinguished Artist in Residence at Northwestern University.


Roberson’s limnology studies have taken him to Alaska, Afognak Island and Bermuda. Twice a team member of the Explorers’ Club of Pittsburgh’s South American Expeditions, he has climbed mountains in the Peruvian and Ecuadorian Andes and explored the upper Amazon jungle. He has been a diver for the Pittsburgh Aquazoo, motorcycled across the United States, and traveled in Mexico, the Caribbean, Nigeria and West Africa. His wide-ranging investigations, both geographical and intellectual, inform a poetics encompassing “startling and just metaphors” and “acrobatic leaps and counter-leaps of thought.” (Reginald Gibbons) He has been described in the American Book Review as one of those deeply skilled poets—like William Bronk, Jack Spicer, and Gustaf Sobin—who have worked far outside that matrix of professional critics and reviewers where literary reputations are determined."


Books of Poetry

To See the Earth Before the End of the World (Wesleyan University Press, 2010)

The New Wing of the Labyrinth (Singing Horse Press, 2009)

City Eclogue (Atelos, 2006)

Atmosphere Conditions (Green Integer, 1999)

Just In: Word of Navigational Change: New and Selected Work (Talisman House, 1998)

Voices Cast Out to Talk Us In (University Of Iowa Press, 1995)

Etai-Eken (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1975)

When Thy King Is a Boy (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1970)


The Best American Poetry 2004, ed. Lyn Hejinian & David Lehman (Simon & Schuster, 2004)

Primary Trouble: An Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry, ed. Schwartz, Donahue & Foster, (Talisman House, 1996)


2008 Shelley Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America

1998 National Poetry Series for Atmosphere Conditions, chosen by Nathaniel Mackey  Iowa Poetry Prize

Lenore Marshall Award finalist, Academy of American Poets

Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Writers’ Award


Ed Roberson, “Biography of Ed Roberson,” Digital Collections - Lake Forest College, accessed March 23, 2018,

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