W. S. Di Piero awarded Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize

W. S. DI PIERO, professor emeritus of English, has been awarded the Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize. The $100,000 prize is sponsored and administered by the Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine.

The award is presented annually to a living U.S. poet and recognizes lifetime accomplishments.

“He wakes up the language, and in doing so wakes up his readers, whose lives are suddenly sharper and larger than they were before,” said Christian Wiman, editor of Poetry magazine.

Di Piero is a poet, essayist and translator. His  most recent book of poetry is Nitro Nights (2011). He also has authored Chinese Apples: New and Selected Poems (2007), Brother Fire (2004) and Skirts and Slacks (2001), among others.

His translations include Giacomo Leopardi’s Pensieri and Euripides’ Ion.

Di Piero, who has been at Stanford since 1982, teaches a graduate poetry workshop.

The prize will be presented at the Poetry Foundation in Chicago on June 11.

More information, including a podcast with Di Piero reading some of his poems, can be found on the Poetry Foundation website.

—BY BROOKE DONALD