Biography of Susan Mitchell
Susan Mitchell (born in 1944) is an American poet, essayist and translator who wrote the poetry collections Rapture and Erotikon.
Mitchell grew up in New York City, New York and now lives in Boca Raton, Florida. She has a B.A. in English literature from Wellesley College, an M.A. from Georgetown University, and was a PhD student at Columbia University. She has taught at Middlebury College and Northeastern Illinois University, and currently holds the Mary Blossom Lee Endowed Chair in Creative Writing at Florida Atlantic University.
She has published poems in literary journals and magazines including The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, The American Poetry Review, The New Republic, Ploughshares, and The Paris Review. Her poems have also been included in five volumes of The Best American Poetry and two Pushcart Prize volumes.
She has been recognized for her work by notable organizations such as the National Endowment for the Arts, the Guggenheim Foundation, and the Lannan Foundation. Her collection, Rapture, won the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award and was a National Book Award finalist.
Susan Mitchell Poems
caught on the wing the wing is a disarray of sun spots overtaking
for Nathaniel, 1900—1968 All afternoon you worked at cutting them down. Branch after branch tossed into the heap. You had your ceremony. Old pants. The pipe.
Once, Driving West of Billings, Montana
I ran into the afterlife. No fluffy white clouds. Not even stars. Only sky dark as the inside of a movie theater at three in the afternoon and getting bigger all the time,
Off Havana, the ocean is green this morning of my birth. The conchers clean their knives on leather straps and watch the sky while three couples who have been dancing on the deck of a ship
Fragment of a Women from Kos
At first all you see are the folds of drapery, high grass close together, swaying beads you parted as a child, field behind the house, then river. Sky.
Tonight the bear comes to the orchard and, balancing on her hind legs, dances under the apple trees,
Tonight the bear
comes to the orchard and, balancing
on her hind legs, dances under the apple trees,
hanging onto their boughs,
dragging their branches down to earth.
Look again. It is not the bear
but some afterimage of her
like the car I once saw in the driveway
after the last guest had gone.