F. D. Reeve

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F.D. Reeve
Born Franklin D'Olier Reeve
September 18, 1928 (1928-09-18)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died June 28, 2013 (2013-06-29) (aged 84)
Lebanon, New Hampshire, U.S.
Cause of death Complications from diabetes
Residence Wilmington, Vermont
Education Princeton University (B.A.)
Columbia University (Ph.D.)
Occupation Writer, poet, academic
Spouse(s) Laura Stevenson
Children 5, including Christopher Reeve
Parent(s) Richard Henry Reeve
Anne Conrad D'Olier
Relatives Franklin D'Olier (maternal grandfather)
Richard Reeve (brother)
Annie Childs (sister)
Awards See Awards
Website www.fdreeve.org

Franklin D'Olier "F.D." Reeve (September 18, 1928 – June 28, 2013[1]) was an American academic, writer, poet, Russian translator, and editor.[2] He was also the father of "Superman" actor Christopher Reeve.[3] He was the grandson of the first American Legion national commander, Franklin D'Olier.

Life and career[edit]

Reeve was born in Philadelphia, the son of Anne Conrad D'Olier and Richard Henry Reeve.[4] He was brought up outside New York City. Reeve worked in the wheat fields for a while during college and, after graduation, was a Hudson River longshoreman for a while. He graduated from Princeton University (1950) and Columbia University (1958), and in 1961 was one of the first exchanges between the American Council of Learned Societies and the USSR Academy of Sciences. In the late summer of 1962 he accompanied Robert Frost to Russia for his meeting with Nikita Khrushchev, where Reeve served as Frost's translator.

Reeve started his academic career teaching Russian language and literature at Columbia University. After teaching at Columbia, Reeve moved to Wesleyan University in 1962 as chairman of the Russian Department. In 1967, he joined Wesleyan's inter-disciplinary College of Letters where he taught literature, humanities and creative writing until his retirement in 2002. During the course of his career he had visiting appointments at Oxford University, Yale, and Columbia.[5]

Since 1994 he lived in Wilmington, Vermont with his wife, novelist Laura Stevenson. Reeve was an officer of the Poetry Society of America, the founding editor of "Poetry Review," the secretary of Poets House in its formative years, and was associated with the New England Poetry Club and the New York Quarterly. He published over two dozen books of poetry, fiction, criticism, and translation.

Reeve died on June 28, 2013 at Dartmouth Hitchcock Hospital in Lebanon, New Hampshire from complications from diabetes. He was 84 and is survived by his fourth wife, Laura C. Stevenson; his son Benjamin; his daughter, Alya, and two sons, Brock and Mark, all from his second marriage; two stepdaughters, Katharine O’Connell and Margaret Staloff; his sister, Anne Reeve Childs; his brother, Richard; and 18 grandchildren.[1]




  • In the Silent Stones. New York: William Morrow. 1968. 
  • The Blue Cat. New York: Farrar,Straus & Giroux. 1972. 
  • Nightway. The Press at Colorado College. 1987. 
  • Concrete Music. Amherst, MA: Pyncheon House. 1992. ISBN 978-1-881119-56-2. 
  • The Moon and Other Failures. Michigan State University Press. 1999. ISBN 978-0-87013-514-9. 
  • The Urban Stampede and Other Poems. Michigan State University Press. 2002. ISBN 978-0870135941. 
  • A World You Haven't Seen: Selected Poems. New York: Rattapallax Press. 2002. ISBN 978-1-892494-48-1. 
  • The Return of the Blue Cat. New York: Other Press. 2005. ISBN 978-1-59051-172-5. 
  • The Toy Soldier. Calgary: Bayeux Arts. 2007. ISBN 978-1-896209-77-7. 
  • The Blue Cat Walks the Earth. Washington, DC: Azul Editions. 2007. ISBN 978-1-885214-46-1. 
  • The Blue Cat Walks the Earth. Middlesbrough: Smokestack Books. 2009. ISBN 978-0-9560341-0-6. 
  • The Puzzle Master. NYQ Books. 2010. ISBN 978-1-935520-20-7. 



  • The White Monk:An Essay on Dostoevsky and Melville. Vanderbilt University Press. 1989. ISBN 0826512348. 
  • The Russian Novel. McGraw Hill. 1966. 
  • Robert Frost in Russia. Atlantic-Little,Brown. 1964. 
  • Aleksandr Blok: Between Image and Idea. Columbia University Press. 1962. 


  • The Garden, New and Selected Poetry and Prose by Bella Akhmadulina. Henry Holt and Co. 1990. 
  • Contemporary Russian Drama. Pegasus. 1968. 
  • Anthology of Russian Plays, volume 2, 1890-1960. Vintage Books. 1963. 
  • Anthology of Russian Plays, volume 1, 1790-1890. Vintage Books. 1961. 


  • "The Urban Stampede", with music by Andrew Gant, London’s Barbican 2000


External links[edit]