David Wojahn

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David Wojahn
Born 1953
Occupation Poet and Professor of Creative Writing
Nationality United States of America
Period 1970s-present
Genre Poetry

David Wojahn (born 1953, St. Paul, Minnesota) is a contemporary American poet who teaches poetry in the Department of English at Virginia Commonwealth University, and in the low residency MFA in Writing program at the Vermont College of Fine Arts. He has been the director of Virginia Commonwealth University's Creative Writing Program.


He was educated at the University of Minnesota, and the University of Arizona.

Wojahn taught for many years at Indiana University. He has also taught at University of Alabama, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, University of Chicago, University of Houston, and University of New Orleans. In 2003, he joined Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia. He also teaches at Vermont College of Fine Arts.


Most of Wojahn's poetry is metrical although he also works in free verse, usually addressing political and social issues in American life. He often takes as his subjects moments of significance in popular culture, such as the assassination of John Lennon, the professional decline of Jim Morrison or the drowning of Brian Jones. He has said that he hopes his poetry is considered "activist."

The poet Richard Hugo selected Wojahn's first book, Icehouse Lights, as a winner of the Yale Series of Younger Poets prize. "David Wojahn's poems concern themselves with emotive basics: leaving home, watching those we love age and die, the inescapable drone of our mortality," Hugo wrote. "Yet as poems, they are far from usual. They help us welcome inside, again and again, the most personal of feelings."[1]

Wojahn has gone on to publish seven more books of poetry, all with the University of Pittsburgh Press. Wojahn has also edited a volume of poetry by his late wife, Lynda Hull, entitled The Only World (HarperPerennial, 1995), as well as her more recent Collected Poems (Graywolf, 2006).



Poetry Books[edit]


  • Strange Good Fortune (Arkansas, 2001)[9]
  • "The Language of My Former Heart" : The Memory-Narrative In Recent American Poetry (Published in Green Mountains Review 1988)


  • Lynda Hull (1995). David Wojahn, ed. The Only World. HarperPerennial. ISBN 978-0-06-095112-2. 
  • Profile of Twentieth Century American Poetry, with Jack Myers (Southern Illinois University, 1991)


  1. ^ Book description at Amazon.com Accessed on June 19, 2007.
  2. ^ University of Pittsburgh Press Accessed on June 19, 2007.
  3. ^ Virginia Commonwealth University press release Accessed on June 17, 2007.
  4. ^ Union Institute & University press release Accessed on June 17, 2007
  5. ^ Blackbird Accessed June 17, 2007.
  6. ^ https://books.google.com/books?id=ADC2AAAACAAJ&dq=David+Wojahn
  7. ^ http://www.news.vcu.edu/vcu_view/pages.aspx?nid=2612
  8. ^ "12 college teachers honored in Virginia". The Richmond Times Dispatch. January 27, 2009. Archived from the original on September 18, 2012. 
  9. ^ University of Arkansas Press. Accessed June 17, 2007.

External links[edit]