Kay Ryan

b. 1945
Kay Ryan

Born in California, Kay Ryan is the author of several books of poetry. Her unique brand of tightly compressed brilliance has earned her the status of one of the great living American poets, and led to her appointment as U.S. Poet Laureate in 2008. Maintaining a career outside the mainstream poetry circuit, Ryan teaches remedial English in California’s Marin County, where she has lived for the last 30 years. Ryan has said that her poems do not start with imagery or sound, but rather develop “the way an oyster does, with an aggravation.”

What People are Saying

"I learned just how much deeper your understanding of a poem is when you memorize it than when you just read it a couple of times, and how you understand it a little better every single time you recite it."
Alex Hanesworth
2015 WA POL Champion