Jared Carter was born in Indiana and was educated at Yale University and Goddard College. He published his first collection—Work, for the Night Is Coming (1981)—at the age of 41. The book received the Walt Whitman Award, selected by Galway Kinnell. “This is one of the clearest and strongest first books to have appeared in recent decades,” reviewer Henry Taylor wrote in Magill’s Literary Annual. “Work, for the Night Is Coming is a beautiful, enriching book.” Dana Gioia, in Poetry, reported that “from beginning to end, this volume has the quiet passion of conviction, the voice of a poet who knows exactly what he wants to say and how to say it.” In the New York Review of Books, Helen Vendler wrote, “Carter’s is a poetry of a resolute middle distance, firmly of this world: between the dust under the earth and the dust of space there exists the place that the poem can illumine.”
Carter’s other collections of poetry include After the Rain (1993), Les Barricades Mystérieuses (1999), Cross this Bridge at a Walk (2006), A Dance in the Street (2012), and Darkened Rooms of Summer: New and Selected Poems (2014).
Carter has worked as a journalist and in publishing. He lives in Indiana.