Van Duyn, Mona Jane

Van Duyn, Mona Jane

(1921–  ) poet; born in Waterloo, Iowa. Born and educated in Iowa, she had a successful career both as an academic and a poet. From 1950, she taught mainly at Washington University (St. Louis, Mo.). In 1971 her To See, To Take won the National Book Award and Near Changes won the Pulitzer Prize in 1991. Her poems have appeared in a wide range of publications, including the New Yorker, Kenyon Review, and Atlantic. From the 1980s, Van Duyn increasingly appeared in anthologies of American poetry. Critics have praised her for her accurate depiction of the everyday world, her graceful use of rhyme, and her ability to make the ordinary seem extraordinary. In 1992–93 she was poet laureate of the U.S. Library of Congress.