Raised on a small New England farm, poet Sophie Cabot Black received a BA from Marlboro College and an MFA from Columbia University.

Black’s collections of poetry include The Misunderstanding of Nature (1994), which won the Poetry Society of America’s Norma Farber First Book Award, and The Descent (2004), which won the Connecticut Book Award. Black’s lyrical poems are both revelatory and elusive, exploring a landscape sharpened with grief and devotion. As a reviewer for the Los Angeles Times Book Review noted, “Sophie Cabot Black . . . is absolutely direct and absolutely removed—a strange confluence of tones that is both intellectually provocative and deeply moving."

Black’s poetry has been anthologized in Best American Poetry and Never Before: Poems About First Experiences (2005). Her essays have been included in Wanting a Child (1998).

Her honors include the Grolier Poetry Prize and the Poetry Society of America’s John Masefield Memorial Award, as well as fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and the Bunting Institute at Radcliffe College. She lives in New York City and Wilton, Connecticut.

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Sophie Cabot Black Poems

Bird at the Window

Beyond is a brightness
I am not equal to

Yet what I see
Turns into what I want,... more »

Bird Left Behind

As for her, the circumstances must be ordinary
And so the return. Door unlocked. The path mowed
Right to the oiled gate; the pasture... more »

Dominion Over the Larger Animal

How many times I have provided
For your death; the apple turned one way
Then the other, an arrangement made,... more »

Sophie Cabot Black Quotes

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