"Yale University has awarded the $100,000 Bollingen Prize in Poetry for 2007 to Wellesley College English professor Frank Bidart.
A three-judge panel said Bidart's poems -- 'eerie, probing, sometimes shocking, always subtle -- venture into psychic terrain left largely unmapped in contemporary poetry.'
The Bollingen Prize in Poetry, awarded biennially by the Yale University Library, was established in 1949 by Paul Mellon, and recognizes the best book published or the lifetime achievement of an American poet. Bidart's volumes include Star Dust, published in 2005 by Farrar, Straus & Giroux.
Bidart is 'one of the most important, influential poets in the country,' William Cain, head of Wellesley's English department, said in a statement. Other Bollingen Prize winners have been Wallace Stevens, Marianne Moore, W.H. Auden, e.e. cummings, Louise Gluck, Adrienne Rich and Jay Wright.
'His work was enormously groundbreaking in terms of typography, he was using tons of odd punctuation and strange spacing, but it worked,'' said Tree Swenson, executive director of the Academy of American Poets, and the co-editor of On Frank Bidart: Fastening the Voice to the Page, to be published by University of Michigan Press in March."