Jean Valentine was born in Chicago, earned her BA from Radcliffe College, and has lived most of her life in New York City. She won the Yale Younger Poets Award for her first book, Dream Barker (Yale University Press, 1965). Her tenth and most recent book of poetry is Little Boat (Wesleyan University Press, 2007). Her previous collection, Door in the Mountain: New and Collected Poems 1965–2003 (Wesleyan University Press, 2004), was the winner of the 2004 National Book Award for Poetry. Lucy, her chapbook of poems, was published by Sarabande in 2009 as part of the Quarternote Chapbook Series.
Valentine has received a Guggenheim Fellowship and awards from the NEA, the Bunting Institute, the Rockefeller Foundation, The New York Council for the Arts, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. She has also been awarded the Maurice English Prize, the Teasdale Poetry Prize, and the Poetry Society of America’s Shelley Memorial Prize.She has taught at Sarah Lawrence College, the Graduate Writing Program of New York University, Columbia University, and the 92nd Street Y in Manhattan.
Photo by Max Greenstreet