The son of poets Alice Notley and the late Ted Berrigan and stepson of poet Douglas Oliver, Anselm Berrigan earned a BA from SUNY Buffalo and an MFA from Brooklyn College. His collections of poetry include Integrity & Dramatic Life (1999), Zero Star Hotel (2002), Some Notes on My Programming (2006), and Free Cell (2009). He coedited The Collected Poems of Ted Berrigan (2005) with Alice Notley and Edmund Berrigan.
Anselm Berrigan’s poetry makes associative leaps of personal and political observation. Keith Taylor, reviewing Free Cell for arborweb (Ann Arbor online), noted that Berrigan “comes back to the basic elements of American speech and the direct representation of emotion, an attitude he seems to trust even as he forces us to challenge the prejudices of our own experience with language.” In a review on Octopus Magazine online, Noah Eli Gordon compared Berrigan’s work to that of Philip Whalen, noting that an “approach … based on exploring and mapping myriad states of consciousness, from those unexamined in our daily routines to those brought on by Rimbaud’s dictum of forceful derangement, is foundational for Zero Star Hotel.”
Berrigan was the recipient of a 2007 poetry fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts. He directed the Poetry Project at St. Mark’s Church from 2003 to 2007 and is cochair of the graduate writing program at Bard College.