Poet, Fiction Writer, Essayist

Joan Murray Joan Murray is a poet, writer, and playwright, whose books include: Swimming for the Ark: New & Selected Poems 1990-2015 (White Pine Press Distinguished Poets Series), Looking for the Parade (W. W. Norton), Dancing on the Edge and Queen of the Mist (both from Beacon Press), and The Same Water (Wesleyan University Press).

She has contributed poetry, fiction, and essays to The Atlantic, Harper's, The Hudson Review, The Kenyon Review,The Nation, The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Paris Review, Poetry, Ploughshares, and The Sun, and to such anthologies as The Pushcart Prize and The Best American Poetry.

She is also the editor of The Pushcart Book of Poetry and the Poems to Live By anthologies from Beacon. She was commissioned by Broadway's Jujamcyn Theatres, and invited by L.A.'s Mark Taper Forum, to develop Queen of the Mist for the stage.

She is a National Poetry Series Winner, a two-time National Endowment for the Arts Poetry Fellowship Winner, a two-time Pushcart Prize Winner for poetry, a New York Foundation for the Arts Poetry Fellowship Winner, a Wesleyan New Poets Series Winner, and Winner of Poetry Society of America's Gordon Barber Award. She is also a Pushcart Prize finalist for both fiction and non-fiction.

Former Poet-in-Residence at the New York State Writers Institute, she has given readings and workshops at hundreds of conferences, universities and cultural centers, including the Chautauqua Institution, the International Poetry Forum, the Lark Theatre in Manhattan, and the Associated Writing Programs. She has also read her work on National Public Radio's Morning Edition, The Bob Edwards Show, and Radio Lab.

"One of the few poets
whose work remains accessible
to both the scholar of poetry
and the casual reader . . . .
Her finely wrought free-form verse
reads as easily as prose
despite its dense, lush imagery."

- The Harvard Review

"Working in free verse, Murray is a master of the single, unforgettable detail. Her accessible, image-driven narratives harness the urgency of their moral or social context while staying true to the pacing and music of daily life."

- The Poetry Foundation