PHILIP LEVINE was born in 1928 in Detroit and attended Wayne State University. After a succession of industrial jobs, he left the city for good and lived in various parts of the country before settling in Fresno, California, where he taught at the state university until his retirement. He was the author of nineteen previous collections of poetry and was the recipient of two National Book Awards and the Pulitzer Prize, among many other honors. He was poet laureate from 2011 until 2012, and served twelve autumns as poet-in-residence at New York University. He died in February 2015.