Ron Padgett (born June 17, 1942 Tulsa, Oklahoma) is an American poet, essayist, fiction writer, translator, and a member of the New York School. Bean Spasms, Padget's first collection of poems, was published in 1967 and written with Ted Berrigan. He won a 2009 Shelley Memorial Award.
As a 17 year-old high school student, he co-founded the avant-garde lit journal The White Dove Review. Collaborating with fellow Central High students Dick Gallup and Joe Brainard, along with University of Tulsa (TU) student-poet Ted Berrigan, Padgett audaciously solicited work for the White Dove from Black Mountain and Beat Movement writers such as Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, LeRoi Jones, e.e. cummings, and Malcolm Cowley. To Padgett's surprise, most of the writers submitted work to the journal. Notably, The White Dove Review printed "The Thrashing Doves" by Jack Kerouac, "My Sad Self (for Frank O'Hara)" by Allen Ginsberg, "Crap and Cauliflower" by Carl Larsen, and "Redhead" by Paul Blackburn, among many others. After five issues, Padgett and co. retired the White Dove and fled Tulsa for New York, where they integrated into the New York School.
Padgett received a B.A. from Columbia University in 1964 and studied creative writing at Wagner College with Kay Boyle, Howard Nemerov, and Kenneth Koch. He was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship and studied 20th-century French literature in Paris during 1965 and 1966. In 1996, he was awarded a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists Award.
Padgett was a poetry workshop instructor at St. Mark's Church in-the-Bowery, New York, NY, from 1968–69 and a poet in various New York City Poets in the Schools programs from 1969-76. He was director of publications for Teachers & Writers Collaborative from around 1982 to 1999. His works on education and writing include The Teachers & Writers Handbook of Poetic Forms (editor), The Teachers & Writers Guide to Walt Whitman (editor), Educating the Imagination (co-editor), and many others. He was also editor of Teachers & Writers Magazine from 1980 to 2000.
He was a cofounder/publisher of Full Court Press (publisher) and editor from 1973-88. He has lectured at educational institutions, including Atlantic Center for the Arts and Columbia University, He has also been the host of a radio series on poetry and the designer of computer writing games.
Awards and honors
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- In Advance of the Broken Arm, "C" Press (New York, NY), 1964.
- Some Things, (With Ted Berrigan and Joe Brainard) (New York, NY) "C" Press, 1964.
- Two Stories for Andy Warhol, "C" Press (New York, NY), 1965.
- Sky, Goliard Press (London, UK), 1966.
- Bean Spasms: Poems and Prose, (With Ted Berrigan) Kulcher Press (New York, NY), 1967.
- Tone Arm, Once Press, 1967.
- 100,000 Fleeing Hilda, (With Joe Brainard) Boke, 1967.
- Bun, (With Tom Clark) Angel Hair Books (New York, NY), 1968.
- Great Balls of Fire. New York, NY: Holt. 1969.; reprint, revised Coffee House Press, 1990, ISBN 978-0-918273-80-2
- The Adventures of Mr. and Mrs. Jim and Ron, (With Jim Dine) Cape Gouliard Press (London, England), 1970.
- Sweet Pea, Aloes, 1971.
- Poetry Collection, Strange Faeces Press (London, England), 1971.
- Sufferin' Succotash (With Joe Brainard) (bound with Kiss My Ass by Michael Brownstein), Adventures in Poetry, 1971.
- Back in Boston Again, (With Ted Berrigan and Tom Clark) Telegraph, 1972.
- Oo La La, (With Jim Dine) Petersburg Press (New York, NY), 1973.
- Crazy Compositions, Big Sky (Southampton, NY), 1974.
- The World of Leon, (With others) Big Sky (Southampton, NY), 1974.
- Toujours l'amour, SUN (New York, NY), 1976.
- Pullman, Arrive (With G. Schneeman) Generations (Paris, France), 1978.
- Tulsa Kid, Z Press (Calais, VT), 1979.
- Triangles in the Afternoon, SUN (New York, NY), 1980.
- How to Be a Woodpecker, (With T. Winkfield) Toothpaste Press (West Branch, IA), 1983.
- Light as Air, (With Katz) Pace Editions (New York, NY), 1988.
- The big something. Geoffrey Young. 1989. ISBN 978-0-935724-38-7.
- New and Selected Poems, David Godine (Boston, MA), 1995.
- You Never Know. Minneapolis, MN: Coffee House Press. 2001. ISBN 978-1-56689-128-8.
- How to be perfect. Coffee House Press. 2007. ISBN 978-1-56689-203-2.
- How Long, Coffee House Press, 2011 ISBN 978-1-56689-256-8
- Collected Poems
- Ted: a personal memoir of Ted Berrigan. Geoffrey Young. 1993. ISBN 978-0-935724-60-8.
- Albanian diary. Geoffrey Young. 1999. ISBN 978-0-935724-95-0.
- Oklahoma tough: my father, king of the Tulsa bootleggers. University of Oklahoma Press. 2003. ISBN 978-0-8061-3509-0.
- Joe: a memoir of Joe Brainard. Coffee House Press. 2004. ISBN 978-1-56689-159-2.
- "Ron Padgett", Poets.org
-  Kline, Joshua (2010). This Land Press. The White Dove Review: How a Group of Tulsa Teens Created a Literary Legend
- Carolyn Kellogg (April 11, 2014). "Jacket Copy: The winners of the Los Angeles Times Book Prizes are ...". LA Times. Retrieved April 14, 2014.
- Ron Padgett's website
- Works by or about Ron Padgett in libraries (WorldCat catalog)
- Poetry Foundation Article
- "Do It", Jacket 37 2009
- "Padgett", Penn Sound