Honored as a teacher and critic, Mary Kinzie has published several collections of critical essays as well as poetry. She has an MA from the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars and a PhD in English from Johns Hopkins University.
Her collections of poetry include Autumn Eros and Other Poems (1991), Ghost Ship (1996), Drift (2003), and California Sorrow (2007). In 2008 Kinzie received the Folger Shakespeare Library’s O.B. Hardison Jr. Poetry Prize in recognition of her work as a writer, teacher, and critic. Joshua Weiner, a judge for the prize, commented that Kinzie’s poems exhibited “investigative precision, openness to process, heartbreaking lyricism, and keen intellection.” He also noted the “formal rigor” of her early works and “musical flexibility” of more recent poems. Kinzie received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1985 and the Celia B. Wagner Award from the Poetry Society of America in 1988.
Kinzie is the author of a guide to poetry and prose, A Poet’s Guide to Poetry (1999). Other critical works include The Cure of Poetry in an Age of Prose: Moral Essays on the Poet’s Calling (1993) and The Judge Is Fury: Dislocation and Form in Poetry (1994).
Kinzie has taught for many years at Northwestern University in Chicago.