Kate Colby (born 1974, Boston) is an American poet and essayist. She grew up in Massachusetts, received her undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University, and an MFA from California College of the Arts. In 1997, she moved to San Francisco, where she worked for several years as a curator at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, on the board of The LAB art space, and later as a grant writer and copyeditor. In 2008, she moved in Providence, Rhode Island, where she currently works as a copywriter and editor, and serves on the board of the Gloucester Writers Center in Massachusetts.
Her work has appeared in Aufgabe, Bennington Review, Columbia Poetry Review, New American Writing, No: A Journal of the Arts, The Rumpus, Verse and The Volta, and has been featured at the RISD, deCordova and Isabella Stewart Gardner museums.
- 2007 Norma Farber First Book Award, Fruitlands. Selected by Rosmarie Waldrop.
- 2011 Finalist for Poetry Book of the Year Award, Beauport
- 2013 Fellowship in Poetry, Rhode Island State Council for the Arts
- 2017-2018 Woodberry Poetry Room Creative Fellowship, Harvard University
- Fruitlands. Litmus Press. 2006. ISBN 978-0-9723331-9-1.
- Unbecoming Behavior. Ugly Duckling Presse. 2008. ISBN 978-1-933254-40-1.
- Beauport. Litmus Press. 2010. ISBN 978-1-933959-11-5.
- The Return of the Native. Ugly Duckling Presse. 2011. ISBN 978-1-933254-77-7.
- Blue Hole. Furniture Press. 2015. ISBN 978-1-940092-11-9.
- I Mean. Ugly Duckling Presse. 2015. ISBN 978-1-937027-45-2.
- Rock of Ages. Anadama Press. 2005.
- A Banner Year. Belladonna. 2006.
- Engine Light. PressBoardPress. 2015.
- Sun Damage. (Digital Chapbook) Essay Press. 2017
Selected Poetry and Essays
- "Night Vision," Bennington Review
- "After Math, " Cossack Review
- "Air Lock," Tupelo Quarterly
- "The Itch," The Rumpus
- "Inside Job," The Volta
- "Then-Wife" and "Metier Pants," PEN America
- "The Needle," Evening Will Come
- Vents (with Todd Shalom), Eleven Eleven
- "Unfinished Bird" (excerpt), Sink Review
- 2017 Blog Posts, Ploughshares
- Poetry Foundation Author Page
Selected Interviews and Recordings
- PennSound Author Page
- "I Mean" PoemTalk
- Interview with Mary-Kim Arnold, The Conversant
- Interview with Kate Greenstreet, BookSlut
Kate Colby's Unbecoming Behavior examines Jane Bowles’ biography through an imaginative parsing of sensory detail, autobiographical detail and critique of creative process. The long poem is as engaging and resonant as the subject matter is rich.
Besides Colby’s interesting thematic projects, Fruitlands bears smaller traces of her fingerprints: her obsession with the color blue, the quote she uses from one of my favorite Built to Spill songs (No one wants to hear / what you dreamt about / unless you dreamt about / them), her references to Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruno Schulz. These moments are so delightful and unique, they feel comfortably inscrutable. Or, just as likely, I realized there was something harsh, even disingenuous, in asking the question “why?” when they felt just right.
- Wesleyan University Writing Archived 2009-05-31 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Fall 2008 Writers Series | California College of the Arts". www.cca.edu. Retrieved 2016-04-30.
- coconut thirteen notes
- AUFGABE NO. 7 - Grinnell, Johnson, Brolaski, and Bers, Eds : Small Press Distribution
- DENISE DOOLEY (December 17, 2008). "UNBECOMING BEHAVIOR by KATE COLBY Reviews". galatea resurrects #11.
- Sommer Browning (March 12, 2007). "Fruitlands by Kate Colby". Cutbank Reviews.