Ms. Mathis was born and raised in Ruston, Louisiana, of Greek and Cherokee descent. Her first five books of poems were published by Sheep Meadow Press. A sixth collection, White Sea, finalist for the Texas Institute of Letters Award, was published by Sarabande Books in 2005.
Cleopatra Mathis’ work has appeared widely in anthologies, textbooks, magazines and journals, including The Best American Poetry, 2009, The New Yorker, Poetry, American Poetry Review, Three Penny Review, Tri-Quarterly, The Southern Review, The Georgia Review, The Made Thing: An Anthology of Contemporary Southern Poetry, The Extraordinary Tide: Poetry by American Women, and The Practice of Poetry. Various prizes for her work include two National Endowment for the Arts grants, in 1984 and 2003; the Jane Kenyon Award for Outstanding Book of Poems in 2001; the Peter Lavin Award for Younger Poets from the Academy of American Poets; two Pushcart Prizes: 1980 and 2006; The Robert Frost Resident Poet Award; a 1981-82 Fellowship in Poetry at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts; The May Sarton Award; and four Individual Artist Fellowships in Poetry from the New Hampshire State Council on the Arts and the New Jersey State Arts Council.
Cleopatra Mathis is the Frederick Sessions Beebe ’35 Professor of the Art of Writing at Dartmouth College, where she founded the creative writing program in 1982.
BOOKS OF POETRY
Aerial View of Louisiana (Sheep Meadow Press, 1979)
The Bottom Land (Sheep Meadow Press, 1983)
The Center for Cold Weather (Sheep Meadow Press, 1989)
Guardian (Sheep Meadow Press, 1995)
What to Tip the Boatman? (Sheep Meadow Press, 2001)