Poet and critic Robert B. Shaw earned a BA from Harvard University, where he studied with Robert Lowell, and a PhD from Yale University. Influenced by Elizabeth Bishop and Philip Larkin, Shaw’s wry and plainspoken formal verse is often grounded in, or sprung from, the debris of daily life. He is the author of several collections of poetry, including Solving For X (2002), which won the Hollis Summers Poetry Prize; Below the Surface (1999); and The Wonder of Seeing Double (1988). His criticism appears widely in such places as the New York Times Book Review, and he has also published a critical study of poets John Donne and George Herbert, The Call of God: The Theme of Vocation in the Poetry of Donne and Herbert (1981).
Shaw has received Shenandoah’s James Boatwright III Prize for Poetry as well as fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Ingram Merrill Foundation. Since 1983, Shaw has taught at Mount Holyoke College as the Emily Dickinson Professor of English.