Former U.S. Poet Laureate who is known for works such as Firstborn and A Village Life. Her 2006 poetry collection, Averno, was a finalist for the National Book Award.
She attended Sarah Lawrence College and Columbia University, but failed to graduate from either institution.
She won the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for The Wild Iris.
She was born on New York's Long Island to a family of Hungarian-Jewish immigrants.
She succeeded Billy Collins as U.S. Poet Laureate.