Lyn Lifshin

American, 1942 - 2019

Lyn Lifshin was the author of more than 125 books and edited 4 anthologies of women writers. Her poems appeared in most poetry and literary magazines in the U.S.A, and her work was included in virtually every major anthology of recent writing by women. She gave more than 700 readings across the U.S.A. and appeared at Dartmouth and Skidmore colleges, Cornell University, the Shakespeare Library, Whitney Museum, and Huntington Library.

Lifshin taught poetry and prose writing for many years at universities, colleges and high schools, and served as Poet in Residence at the University of Rochester, Antioch, and Colorado Mountain College. She won numerous awards including the Jack Kerouac Award for Kiss The Skin Off.  She is the subject of the documentary film Lyn Lifshin: Not Made of Glass.

Lifshin was dedicated to the small presses, which first published her, and for managing to survive on her own apart from any major publishing house or academic institution. She earned the distinction “Queen of the Small Presses.” The author Ed Sanders described her as “a modern Emily Dickinson.” Lifshin’s poem “No More Apologizing” has been called “among the most impressive documents of the women’s poetry movement” by Alicia Ostriker.

Lifshin’s prizewinning book (Paterson Poetry Award) Before It’s Light was published by Black Sparrow Press in 1999, following their 1997 publication of Cold Comfort. Another Woman Who Looks Like Me appeared in 2006.