Ralph Burns is a professor and co-director of creative writing at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. His most recent book, Ghost Notes, winner of the FIELD Poetry Prize, was published in 2000 by Oberlin College Press. Burns’ five other books include: Swamp Candles, winner of the Iowa Poetry Prize (University of Iowa Press, 1996); Mozart’s Starling (Ohio Review Books, 1990); Any Given Day (The University of Alabama Press, 1985); Windy Tuesday Nights, winner of the Mountains of Minnesota Award (Milkweed Editions, 1984); and Us, winner of the Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award (Cleveland State University Poetry Center, 1983). Burns has published over 200 poems in journals, such as The Atlantic, Poetry, The Kenyon Review, Shenandoah, The Southern Review, and Field. He has also received two National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships in Poetry, the Porter Prize for Literary Excellence, and the Faculty Excellence Award in Scholarship at University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and a Poetry Fellowship from the Arkansas Arts Council.
“If Albert Camus wanted to know what was American in our poetry right now, what showed the breadth of our language and the honesty of its utterance, what was the best of American langue et parole, I’ d show him Ralph Burns’ s poems.” –Mark Jarman