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Marianne Moore (1887–1972)

Author of Complete Poems

78+ Works 2,452 Members 19 Reviews 15 Favorited

About the Author

Born in St. Louis, the "first lady of American poetry," Marianne Moore, graduated from Bryn Mawr College in 1909. In 1918 she moved to New York City with her mother, remaining there for the rest of her life. She became a well-known character in her Brooklyn Heights neighborhood, easily recognizable show more in a large black hat and rather eccentric style. In 1921 a few of her friends pirated her work and published it under the title Poems. On her seventy-fifth birthday, November 15, 1962, she was honored by the National Institute of Arts and Letters, and in a special interview for the N.Y. Times, she spoke of her feelings concerning the treatment of poetry: "I'm very doubtful about scholasticizing poetry," she said. "I feel very strongly that poetry should not be an assignment but a joy." Five years later she said: "I wonder that I can bear myself to be in a world where they don't outlaw war." In 1967 Moore received both the MacDowell Medal and a Gold Medal. Mayor John Lindsay of New York City hailed her as "truly the poet laureate of New York City." The famed Rosenbach Museum in Philadelphia has a collection devoted to her work and a detailed replica of a room in her Brooklyn home. Moore brought to her work a prodigious knowledge and passionate interest in many diverse fields, including the arts, natural history, and public affairs. Her use of the images and language of these fields in her poetry enabled her to offset traditional poetic tones with the cadences of prose rhetoric and everyday speech. This talent, coupled with her precision and intricate metrics, make her one of the leading modernist poets. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

Includes the name: Marianne Moore

Image credit: Marianne Moore (1887-1972)
Photographed by George Platt Lynes, circa 1935
(Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division,
Reproduction Number: LC-USZ62-101955)

Works by Marianne Moore

Complete Poems (1967) 885 copies
The Poems of Marianne Moore (2003) 228 copies
Collected Poems (1951) 104 copies
A Marianne Moore Reader (1961) 74 copies
New collected poems (2017) 66 copies
Observations: Poems (1924) 53 copies
Selected Poems (1935) 41 copies
O to be a dragon (1957) 31 copies
Like a bulwark (1956) 19 copies
Predilections (1955) 15 copies
Nevertheless (1944) 15 copies
What Are Years 11 copies
Fairy Tales (2019) 9 copies
Le poesie (1991) 8 copies
Poems (2010) 6 copies
Homage to Henry James (1971) 3 copies
Poetry [poem] 3 copies
Idiosyncrasy & Technique (1958) 2 copies
The absentee 1 copy
Riverside poetry 3 — Editor — 1 copy
Marriage 1 copy
The Student 1 copy
A talisman 1 copy
W. S. Landor 1 copy

Associated Works

Fables (1668) — Translator, some editions — 1,787 copies
The Making of a Poem: A Norton Anthology of Poetic Forms (2000) — Contributor — 1,228 copies
Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, and Drama (1995) — Contributor, some editions — 902 copies
Rock Crystal (1945) — Translator, some editions — 479 copies
A Pocket Book of Modern Verse (1954) — Contributor, some editions — 435 copies
The Rag and Bone Shop of the Heart: A Poetry Anthology (1992) — Contributor — 383 copies
Baseball: A Literary Anthology (2002) — Contributor — 330 copies
The Penguin Book of Women Poets (1978) — Contributor — 295 copies
The Best of Modern Humor (1983) — Contributor — 287 copies
The Faber Book of Modern Verse (1936) — Contributor, some editions — 283 copies
Writing New York: A Literary Anthology (1998) — Contributor — 274 copies
The Art of Losing (2010) — Contributor — 191 copies
American Religious Poems: An Anthology (2006) — Contributor — 160 copies
Imagist Poetry (Penguin Modern Classics) (1972) — Contributor — 158 copies
The Faber Book of Beasts (1997) — Contributor — 136 copies
Poets of World War II (2003) — Contributor — 133 copies
A Comprehensive Anthology of American Poetry (1929) — Contributor — 127 copies
No More Masks! An Anthology of Poems by Women (1973) — Contributor — 122 copies
The Penguin Book of Women's Humour (1996) — Contributor — 114 copies
The Imagist Poem (1963) — Contributor, some editions — 98 copies
Twentieth-Century American Poetry (1777) — Contributor — 93 copies
The Gender of Modernism: A Critical Anthology (1990) — Contributor — 62 copies
The Vintage Book of American Women Writers (2011) — Contributor — 55 copies
Lament for the Makers: A Memorial Anthology (1996) — Contributor — 49 copies
Great Baseball Stories (1979) — Contributor — 47 copies
The Ecopoetry Anthology (2013) — Contributor — 47 copies
60 Years of American Poetry (1996) — Contributor — 28 copies
William Carlos Williams: A Collection of Critical Essays (1966) — Contributor, some editions — 21 copies
Modernist Women Poets: An Anthology (2014) — Contributor — 16 copies
Poetry in Crystal (1963) — Contributor — 14 copies
Modern Women Poets (2005) — Contributor — 13 copies
Alfabet op de rug gezien (1995) — Contributor — 10 copies
Perspectives on poetry (1968) — Contributor — 7 copies
Life and letters today, Spring 1937 (1937) — Contributor — 1 copy
The Best of American Poetry [Audio] (1997) — Contributor — 1 copy


17th century (65) 19th century (44) 20th century (160) American (110) American literature (146) American poetry (89) anthology (791) baseball (153) classic (42) classics (48) collection (72) criticism (41) drama (42) essays (107) fables (200) fairy tales (42) fiction (362) French (143) French literature (130) humor (111) Library of America (155) literary criticism (76) literature (415) LOA (52) Marianne Moore (45) modernism (53) New York (57) non-fiction (159) poems (52) poetics (51) poetry (2,646) poetry anthology (72) reference (69) short stories (139) sports (61) textbook (74) to-read (262) unread (42) women (57) writing (76)

Common Knowledge

Date of death
Kirkwood, Missouri, USA
Place of death
New York, New York, USA
Places of residence
New York, New York, USA
Bryn Mawr College
Carlisle Indian School
New York Public Library
Awards and honors
Helen Haire Levinson Prize (1933)
Fellow, American Academy of Arts and Sciences (1962)
Short biography
Marianne Moore was born in Kirkwood, Missouri, near St. Louis, in the manse of the Presbyterian church where her maternal grandfather, John Riddle Warner, served as pastor. Her father, John Milton Moore, suffered a psychotic episode before she was born, and her parents separated at that time; Moore never met him. She and her elder brother were raised by their mother, Mary Warner Moore in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. In 1909, she earned a BA in biology from Bryn Mawr College, and her early poems were first published in the college’s literary magazines. After graduation, Moore studied at Carlisle Commercial College and taught at the U.S. Indian School there. Moore and her mother, who were devoted to each other, moved to New York City in 1918 and Moore began working at the New York Public Library in 1921. Her first book Poems was published in London in 1921. From 1925 to 1929, she was the editor of the influential literary magazine
The Dial, a role that expanded her circle of literary acquaintances and introduced her work to a more international audience. She was particularly fond of animals and much of her imagery was drawn from the natural world. Her Collected Poems (1951) won both the Pulitzer Prize in poetry and the National Book Award, and in 1953 she was awarded the Bollingen Prize. Her prose works included Predilections (1955), a volume of literary criticism, and Idiosyncrasy and Technique: Two Lectures (1958). Her many honors and awards included the Poetry Society of America's Gold Medal for Distinguished Development and the National Medal for Literature.



Marianne Moore in Legacy Libraries (March 2018)


I actually prefer the versions of "Marriage" and "An Octopus" that appear in her oft-dismissed "Complete Poems." The highlight of this volume, for me, is the subject index. Even more than the notes, the subject index is a fascinating key to interpretation. I kept thinking of Nabokov's use of notes and index in "Pale Fire."
gtross | Sep 4, 2022 |
Strangely disappointing. The flap text quotes T.S. Eliot as having written, "One of the books which obviously must in the fullness of time be published [...] will be the Letters of Marianne Moore." Since this volume includes only a few, very short letters from her to him, it's almost impossible to know what he was thinking when he wrote that assessment. I would have preferred a volume combining her prose with a handful of the best letters here.
gtross | Aug 15, 2022 |
There are those who will talk for an hour
without telling you why they have
come. And I? This is no madrigal--

Moore features prominently in the biography of Pound I am presently embroiled in with my friends. She was but a name, I knew nothing further, which is the case for most poets. The disparate contexts in this collection all appear to unshackle memory and lament time's insistence. This occurs from discussing the Brooklyn Dodgers as well as the failures of idealism at Jamestown. The language appears precious, lovingly chosen and placed.… (more)
jonfaith | Feb 22, 2019 |



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