Molly Peacock was born in Buffalo, New York, on June 30, 1947. She attended the State University of New York (SUNY) at Binghamton and Johns Hopkins University, where she received an MA in 1977.
Peacock’s collections of poetry include The Analyst (W. W. Norton, 2017); The Second Blush: Poems (W. W. Norton, 2008); Cornucopia: New and Selected Poems (W. W. Norton, 2002); Original Love (W. W. Norton, 1995); Take Heart (Random House, 1989); Raw Heaven (Random House, 1984); and And Live Apart (University of Missouri Press, 1980).
Peacock is also the author of numerous prose works, including A Friend Sails in on a Poem: Essays on Friendship, Freedom and Poetic Form (Palimpsest Press, 2022); Flower Diary: In Which Mary Hiester Reid Paints, Travels, Marries & Opens a Door (ECW Press, 2021); Alphabetique, 26 Characteristic Fictions (McClelland & Stewart, 2014); The Paper Garden: An Artist Begins Her Life’s Work at 72 (Bloomsbury, 2011); How to Read a Poem, and Start a Poetry Circle (Riverhead Books, 1999); and her literary memoir Paradise, Piece by Piece (Riverhead Books, 1998). Peacock is also the editor of the anthology The Private I: Privacy in a Public World (Graywolf Press, 2001) and coeditor of Poetry in Motion: 100 Poems from the Subways and Buses (W. W. Norton, 1996).
Peacock has received awards from the Danforth Foundation, the Ingram Merrill Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Woodrow Wilson Foundation.
A president emerita of the Poetry Society of America, Peacock was one of the originators of Poetry in Motion, a popular program of that places poems on placards in subways and buses. Peacock has been a writer in residence and teacher at numerous universities and is currently a member of the graduate faculty of Spalding University’s brief residency MFA program. She is also the Elliston Poet at the University of Cincinnati and a lecturer at the Unterberg Poetry Center of the 92nd Street Y. She was an honorary fellow at Johns Hopkins University and served as poet in residence at the American Poets’ Corner in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, in New York, New York. Peacock has performed her one-woman show in poems, The Shimmering Verge, throughout North America.
Peacock lives in Toronto.