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 learned that I had the ability to capture the attention of an audience and evoke emotion from them. When I recited my first poem in 9th grade for a mock POL class competition, I was incredibly shy and barely audible. But eventually I grew to love sharing the emotions poems gave me."
Chiara Raimondo
2016 NY POL Champion