Ted Kooser (1939 – ) was born in Ames, Iowa. He was a two-term Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry chosen by the Librarian of Congress. He used his time as laureate to further the cause of poetry with American readers. Partnering with the Poetry Foundation, he began the “American Life in Poetry” program, which offers a free weekly poem to newspapers across the United States, aiming to raise the visibility of poetry. He’s won four Pushcart Prizes, the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry, and a slew of other honors and awards.
To read Ted Kooser’s poem “In January” click:
by Ted Kooser
Only one cell in the frozen hive of night
is lit, or so it seems to us:
this Vietnamese café, with its oily light,
its odors whose colorful shapes are like flowers.
Laughter and talking, the tick of chopsticks.
Beyond the glass, the wintry city
creaks like an ancient wooden bridge.
A great wind rushes under all of us.
The bigger the window, the more it trembles.
“In January” from Delights & Shadows, © 2004 by Ted Kooser –
Copper Canyon Press