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Billy Collins POETRY, GHAZALS & SHAYARI

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William James "Billy" Collins (born March 22, 1941) is an American poet, appointed as Poet Laureate of the United States from 2001 to 2003. He is a Distinguished Professor at Lehman College of the City University of New York and is the Senior Distinguished Fellow of the Winter Park Institute, Florida. Collins was recognized as a Literary Lion of the New York Public Library (1992) and selected as the New York State Poet for 2004 through 2006. As of 2015, he is a teacher in the MFA program at Ston... View More

Make This Poet Your Favorite

William James "Billy" Collins (born March 22, 1941) is an American poet, appointed as Poet Laureate of the United States from 2001 to 2003. He is a Distinguished Professor at Lehman College of the City University of New York and is the Senior Distinguished Fellow of the Winter Park Institute, Florida. Collins was recognized as a Literary Lion of the New York Public Library (1992) and selected as the New York State Poet for 2004 through 2006. As of 2015, he is a teacher in the MFA program at Stony Brook Southampton. Collins was born in Manhattan to William and Katherine Collins and grew up in Queens and White Plains. William was born to a large family from Ireland and Katherine was from Canada. His mother, Katherine Collins was a nurse who stopped working to raise the couple's only child. Mrs. Collins had the ability to recite verses on almost any subject, which she often did, and cultivated in her young son the love of words, both written and spoken. Billy Collins attended Archbishop Stepinac High School in White Plains and received a B.A. in English from the College of the Holy Cross in 1963; he received his M.A. and Ph.D in Romantic Poetry from the University of California, Riverside. His professors at Riverside included Victorian scholar and poet Robert Peters. In 1975 Collins founded The Mid-Atlantic Review with his friend Walter Blanco and Steve Bailey. As a kid in middle school Collins was writing dark, Gothic-poetry. Collins started to get more into poetry because his dad would bring Poetry magazine home from his work. There he came under the influence of contemporary poets like Karl Shapiro, Howard Nemerov and Reed Whittemore, and during his adolescence he was influenced by Beat Generation poets as well.