William Matthews

(November 11, 1942 - November 12, 1997 / Cincinnati, Ohio)

William Matthews
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an American poet and essayist.

Raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, Matthews earned a bachelor's degree from Yale University, and a master's from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

In addition to serving as a Writer-in-Residence at Boston's Emerson College, Matthews held various academic positions at institutions including Cornell University, the University of Washington (Seattle), the University of Colorado at Boulder, and the University of Iowa. He served as president of Associated Writing Programs and of the Poetry Society of America. At the time of his death he was a professor of English and director of the creative writing program at City College of New York ... more »

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Comments about William Matthews

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  • Elizabeth Smith (4/26/2014 1:45:00 PM)

    He was my stepfather-can't say you would have loved to have met him-he did have a great sense of humor and was brilliant. Still..complicated soul, let's just say that.

  • V P Mahur V P Mahur (2/11/2014 2:24:00 AM)

    I like the poem 'I Like'. lovely

  • Martin O'Neill Martin O'Neill (2/11/2012 5:18:00 AM)

    Just beautiful writing to gladden the soul from having read it. I would so have loved to have met him. The world is a poorer place without him.

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Best Poem of William Matthews

Dire Cure

"First, do no harm," the Hippocratic
Oath begins, but before she might enjoy
such balm, the docs had to harm her tumor.
It was large, rare, and so anomalous
in its behavior that at first they mis-
diagnosed it. "Your wife will die of it
within a year." But in ten days or so
I sat beside her bed with hot-and-sour
soup and heard an intern congratulate
her on her new diagnosis: a children's
cancer (doesn't that possessive break
your heart?) had possessed her. I couldn't stop
personifying it. Devious, dour,
it had a clouded heart, like Iago's.
It loved ...

Read the full of Dire Cure

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