Mary Jo Bang

(1946 / Ferguson, Missouri)

Biography of Mary Jo Bang

Mary Jo Bang poet

Mary Jo Bang (born October 22, 1946 in Waynesville, Missouri) is an American poet.
She grew up in Ferguson, Missouri. She graduated from Northwestern University, in sociology, from the Polytechnic of Central London, and from Columbia University, with an M.F.A. She teaches at Washington University in St. Louis.
Her work has appeared in New American Writing, Paris Review, The New Yorker,The New Republic, Denver Quarterly and Harvard Review.
Bang was the poetry co-editor of the Boston Review from 1995 to 2005. She was a judge for the 2004 James Laughlin Award.
She lives in St. Louis, Missouri.

Awards and recognitions:
Publishers Weekly; "2007 Best Books of the Year" St. Louis Post-Dispatch; "Most Recommended" National Book
Critics Circle[disambiguation needed], December 2007
National Book Critics Circle Award, 2007
Washington University Faculty Research Grant, Summer 2007
Bellagio Foundation Fellowship 2007
Finalist, Anna Akhmatova Award 2006
Poetry Society of America's Alice Fay di Castagnola Award 2005 (Fannie Howe, Judge) & 2002 (Brenda Hillman, Judge)
Bogliosco Foundation Fellowship 2005
Guggenheim Fellowship 2004
Pushcart Prize 2003
"Louise in Love" listed in: "Notable Books in 2001" National Book Critics Circle; "Best Books of 2001" St. Louis Post-Dispatch
University of Georgia’s Contemporary Poets Series Competition 2000 (Mark Strand, Judge)
Hodder Fellowship, Princeton University 1999-2000
Chateau Lavigny Fellowship 1999
Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writer's Award 1998
Yaddo Fellowship 1998
"Apology for Want" listed in “Notable Books in 1997” by the National Book Critics Circle
Bread Loaf Writers' Conference Fellowship, 1997
Katharine Bakeless Nason Publication Prize 1996 (Edward Hirsh, Judge)
MacDowell Colony Fellowship, 1996
"Discovery" The Nation Poetry Award 1995
Honorable Mention, Academy of American Poets Poetry Competition, 1995 (Robert Pinsky, Judge)
Columbia University School of the Arts Dean's Award, 1994 Updates

And As In Alice

Alice cannot be in the poem, she says, because
She's only a metaphor for childhood
And a poem is a metaphor already
So we'd only have a metaphor
Inside a metaphor. Do you see?
They all nod. They see. Except for the girl
With her head in the rabbit hole. From this vantage,
Her bum looks like the flattened backside
Of  a black and white panda. She actually has one

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