Sapardi Djoko Damono (born 20 March 1940 in Surakarta, Central Java) is an Indonesian poet known for lyrical poems, and who is widely regarded as the pioneer of lyrical poetry in Indonesia. Sapardi attended grammar school at Sekolah Dasar Kasatriyan in his home town of Surakarta (also known as Solo), and from there he went on to junior high and high school at SMP 2 and SMA 2. He was an avid reader from an early age, and was a frequent visitor to the local libraries around Solo. His interests were broad, ranging from the works of Karl May, William Saroyan, and Pramoedya Ananta Toer, to comics by R.A. Kosasih. Eventually Sapardi, together with one of his younger siblings, began a lending library in their neighbourhood. Sapardi began writing poetry while still in high school in Surakarta. After his graduation from high school, Sapardi moved to Yogyakarta to study at the English division of the Literature department at Gajah Mada University, and later completed his graduate studies in Indonesian literature. During this period he also became involved in radio broadcasting and the theater, as well as writing poetry. Sapardi's literary career developed alongside his academic career.

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