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  Mark Strand
Mark Strand is the author of ten books of poems, including Blizzard of One, which was awarded the 1999 Pulitzer Prize.
Mark Strand
Strand has also published a book of short stories, several translations from European and Latin American poets, essays, three children's books, and several monographs on contemporary artists.

Octavio Paz has written. "Mark Strand has chosen the negative path, with loss as the first step towards fullness: it is also the opening to a transparent verbal perfection." The Library Journal said of his work, "No poet his age has a more human voice or a more piercing melancholy... Death, exile, childhood, the vanished lover: loss is the occasion for the lyrics... Strand's mature work, more than ever concerned with mortality, makes one feel alive."

from Our Masterpiece Is the Private Life

Mark Strand
STANDING on the quay between the Roving Swan and Star Immaculate,
Breathing the night air as the moment of pleasure taken
In pleasure vanishing seems to grow, its self-soiling

Beauty, which can only be what it was, sustaining itself
A little longer in its going, I think of our own smooth passage
Through the graded partitions, the crises that bleed

Into the ordinary, leaving us a little more tired each time,
A little more distant from the experiences, which, in the old days,
Held us captive for hours. The drive along the winding road

Back to the house, the sea pounding against the cliffs,
The glass of whiskey on the table, the open book, the questions,
All the day's rewards waiting at the doors of sleep...

Blizzard of One, Alfred A. Knopf, 1998

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