Stanley Plumly was born in Barnesville, Ohio in 1939. Plumly graduated from Wilmington College in 1962, and received his MA from Ohio University in 1968, where he also did course work toward a PhD.
Plumly’s books of poetry include Orphan Hours: Poems (W. W. Norton, 2013); Old Heart (W. W. Norton, 2007), nominated for the National Book Award, and winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the Paterson Poetry Prize; The Marriage in the Trees (Ecco Press, 1997); Boy on the Step (HarperCollins, 1989); Summer Celestial (HarperCollins, 1983); Out-of-the-Body Travel (Ecco Press, 1977), which won the William Carlos Williams Award and was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award; Giraffe (Louisiana State University Press, 1973); and In the Outer Dark (Louisiana State University Press, 1970), which won the Delmore Schwartz Memorial Award.
Plumly also published the nonfiction books The Immortal Evening: A Legendary Dinner with Keats, Wordsworth, and Lamb (W. W. Norton, 2016), winner of the Truman Capote Award; Posthumous Keats: A Personal Biography (W. W. Norton, 2008); and Argument & Song: Sources & Silences in Poetry (Other Press, 2003).
From 1970–75, Plumly edited the Ohio Review, then the Iowa Review from 1976–78. He taught at numerous institutions, including Louisiana State University, Ohio University, Princeton and Columbia Universities, and the Universities of Iowa, Michigan, and Houston, as well as at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in 1978 and 1979.
Plumly’s honors include a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Ingram-Merrill Foundation Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. He served as a professor of English at the University of Maryland, College Park.
Stanley Plumly died on April 11, 2019.