Lorna Goodison

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Lorna Goodison (born 1947) is a Jamaican poet, a leading West Indian writer of the generation born after World War II, currently dividing her time between Jamaica and Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she teaches at the University of Michigan.


She was born in Kingston, Jamaica, one of nine siblings, and was educated at St. Hugh's High School, a leading Anglican high school in Jamaica and the Jamaica School of Art, before going to New York to study at the Art Students League. She had also been writing poetry since her teenage years; some early poems appeared anonymously in the Jamaica Gleaner.

In her 20s, back in Jamaica, she taught art and worked in advertising and public relations before deciding to pursue a career as a professional writer. She began to publish under her own name in the Jamaica Journal, and to give readings at which she built up an appreciative audience.

In the early 1990s, Goodison began teaching part of the year at various North American universities, including the University of Toronto and the University of Michigan.

Goodison's most recent book is a memoir, From Harvey River (2008). She has published eleven collections of poems: Tamarind Season (1980), I Am Becoming My Mother (1986, winner of the Commonwealth Writers Prize, Americas region), Heartease (1988), Poems (1989), Selected Poems (1992), To Us, All Flowers Are Roses (1995), Turn Thanks (1999), Guinea Woman (2000), Travelling Mercies (2001), Controlling the Silver (2005), and Goldengrove (2006)....
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