Twentieth-century American poet and librettist. His poetry collections include Storm at Castelfranco and The Sense of Occasion; his co-written libretti include The Bassarids and Elegy for Young Lovers.
He studied at Brooklyn College and at the University of Michigan. He published his debut poetic work, An Elegy, in 1951.
He spent many of his summers in Austria and Italy and passed his winters in New York and Greece.
He collaborated with W.H. Auden on several libretti. He and Auden were close friends and, occasionally, lovers.
He wrote the libretto for a 1951 Igor Stravinsky opera entitled The Rake's Progress.