Thomas James

1946–1974
Thomas James

Thomas James was born Thomas Edward Bojeski in Joliet, Illinois, where he would live most of his life. His poems, which demonstrate technical skill and the influence of Sylvia Plath, appeared in magazines and anthologies, including, North American Review, Poetry, and Poetry Northwest, which awarded him the Theodore Roethke Prize in 1969. He died in 1974 at the age of twenty-seven, shortly after the first publication of his only book, Letters to a Stranger. Since its publication, it has become one of the underground classics of contemporary American poetry. Writing in The Washington Post, Edward Hirsch describes Letters to a Stranger as “a book of dark intensities and deeply felt connections, both haunted and haunting, at once brooding, sensual and lucid. ...The voice in these poems—painfully lonely and filled with longing, estranged and religious—has stayed with me for more than twenty years. It deserves to be remembered.”

Discover this poet’s context and related poetry, articles, and media.

Articles About THOMAS JAMES

Poet Categorization

POET’S REGION U.S., Midwestern

LIFE SPAN 1946–1974

Thomas James

Biography

Thomas James was born Thomas Edward Bojeski in Joliet, Illinois, where he would live most of his life. His poems, which demonstrate technical skill and the influence of Sylvia Plath, appeared in magazines and anthologies, including, North American Review, Poetry, and Poetry Northwest, which awarded him the Theodore Roethke Prize in 1969. He died in 1974 at the age of twenty-seven, shortly after the first publication of his only . . .

Report a problem with this biography

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.