American neo-formalist poet and professor known for the poem "On an Urban Battlefield" and for such poetry collections as The Argot Merchant Disaster and Elegy in a Country Church Yard. His literary awards include the Lenore Marshall Poetry Prize and the Yale Series of Younger Poets Honor.
He studied at the University of California-Berkeley, Harvard University, the University of Chicago, the California Institute of Technology, and the American Academy in Rome.
He referred to his formal writing style as "SLABS" ("Standard Length and Breadth Sonnets").
He was born in Columbus, Ohio, and he died in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He was the father of one daughter and four sons.
He and Sam Greenlee were literary contemporaries.