Search more than 3,000 biographies of contemporary and classic poets.
Witter Bynner was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1881. He graduated from Harvard University in 1902. After college, he worked as a newspaper reporter and, later, as the assistant editor of McClure’s magazine.
Bynner published his first poetry collection, An Ode to Harvard (Small, Maynard, & Co.), in 1907. He was also the author of New Poems (Alfred A. Knopf, 1960); Take Away the Darkness (Alfred A. Knopf, 1947); The Beloved Stranger (Alfred A. Knopf, 1919); Tiger (M. Kennerley, 1913); and several other poetry collections.
Bynner was also known for his works in translation, including The Way of Life According to Laotzu: An American Version (John Day Co., 1944), and a literary biography, Journey with Genius: Recollections and Reflections Concerning the D. H. Lawrences (J. Day Co, 1951).
In 1916, Bynner and Arthur David Ficke published Spectra: A Book of Poetic Experiments, under the pseudonyms Emanuel Morgan and Anne Krish. The book included poems and a manifesto on “spectrism,” a parody of Imagism. In 1918, Bynner admitted that the book was a hoax.
In 1922, Bynner settled in Santa Fe, New Mexico with his partner, Robert Hunt. He died there on June 1, 1968.