Gail Mazur

b. 1937
Gail Mazur

After nearly 13 years of apprenticing herself to poetry, during which she studied with Robert Lowell and immersed herself in the Boston/Cambridge literary scene, Mazur published her first collection, Nightfire (1978), at age 40. Other books include The Pose of Happiness (1986); They Can’t Take That Away from Me (2001); and Zeppo’s First Wife: New & Selected Poems (2006). Tess Taylor, interviewing Mazur for the Atlantic Monthly in 2006, described the work in Zeppo’s First Wife as “restless and canny, penned in the voice of a tough-minded, comic speaker who names the minute disconsolations of daily life and then urges herself to engage this named world more wholly or more deeply.”

A graduate of Smith College, Mazur has received grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Bunting Institute of Radcliffe College. Her work has been recognized with a Massachusetts Book Award, and she has been a finalist for the National Book Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and the Paterson Poetry Prize. Active in the Boston and Cambridge literary communities, Mazur has served as the founding director of the Blacksmith House Poetry Center, and as Distinguished Writer in Residence at Emerson College.

Speaking of the series at Blacksmith House, Mazur explains what has become a mission: “To keep the thing going, to support and validate the work of poets, to make a dent in the isolation writers feel in their working life.”

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Articles About GAIL MAZUR

Audio & Podcasts

Poetry Lectures
  • Listen Oral History Initiative: On Elizabeth Bishop
    An informal conversation remembering the life and work of Elizabeth Bishop, with Lloyd Schwartz, Frank Bidart, Rosanna Warren, Gail Mazur, and Megan Marshall. Conducted at Harvard University in March 2012, and used by permission of the participants and the Woodberry Poetry Room, Harvard College Library. To see the event video, click here.
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POET’S REGION U.S., New England

LIFE SPAN 1937–

Gail Mazur

Biography

After nearly 13 years of apprenticing herself to poetry, during which she studied with Robert Lowell and immersed herself in the Boston/Cambridge literary scene, Mazur published her first collection, Nightfire (1978), at age 40. Other books include The Pose of Happiness (1986); They Can’t Take That Away from Me (2001); and Zeppo’s First Wife: New & Selected Poems (2006). Tess Taylor, interviewing Mazur for the Atlantic Monthly . . .

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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