Delmore Schwartz

1913–1966
Delmore Schwartz

Born in Brooklyn to Romanian Jewish parents, Delmore Schwartz is a tragic figure—a gifted writer who only fitfully fulfilled his potential before an early death. After the remarkable accomplishment of his first autobiographical poems and stories, which poignantly describe the sensations of childhood and the conflicted aspirations of the intellectual children of immigrants, he lived chaotically and pursued an eccentric career. Schwartz’s decline into paranoia and his lonely demise in a Times Square hotel were fictionalized by his friend Saul Bellow in Humboldt’s Gift (1975), and several of John Berryman’s Dream Songs elegize him.

What People are Saying

"I have always loved poetry, but through Poetry Out Loud I have learned a greater respect for all different types of poetry. This competition is so much more than memorizing and reciting a poem; I became very invested in each one of my poems."
Janessa Gould
2017 WI POL Champion