Robert Bly Receives Frost Medal

Read more from G&A: The Contest Blog

Posted 2.14.13 by Prize Reporter

The Poetry Society of America (PSA) has announced that poet Robert Bly will receive the 2013 Frost Medal, an award presented annually for distinguished lifetime achievement in poetry. 

The PSA’s most prestigious award, the Frost Medal was established in 1930. Originally called the “Gold Medal,” the award’s early recipients included Robert Frost, Edna St. Vincent Millay, Wallace Stevens, and Marianne Moore. In 1984, to pay tribute to Robert Frost's longstanding association with the organization, including his tenure as honorary president from 1940-1963, the award was renamed in his honor; subsequent winners have included Gwendolyn Brooks, Adrienne Rich, John Ashbery, Sonia Sanchez, and in 2012, Marilyn Nelson. Winners receive a cash prize of $2,500. 

Born in western Minnesota in 1926, Robert Bly attended the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and later founded the literary magazine The Fifties (later The Sixties and The Seventies), which published poetry in translation. Bly published his first book of poetry, Silence in the Snowy Fields (Wesleyan), in 1962, and received a National Book Award in 1968 for The Light Around the Body (Harper & Row). He has since published over thirty books of poetry, translation, and essays, including most recently the poetry collection Talking Into the Ear of a Donkey (Norton, 2011). A forthcoming collection, Stealing Sugar from the Castle: the Selected Poems of Robert Bly, will be published in September by Norton. 

Bly will be honored, along with the twelve recipients of the annual PSA awards, at a ceremony on Friday, April 5, at the National Arts Club in New York City. Bly will also give a reading.

The Poetry Society of America, the nation's oldest poetry organization, was founded in 1910. Its mission is “to build a larger and more diverse audience for poetry, to encourage a deeper appreciation of the vitality and breadth of poetry in the cultural conversation, and to place poetry at the crossroads of American life.” For more information about the PSA and the annual awards, visit the website