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Walt McDonald

Walt McDonald

Walt McDonald was an Air Force pilot, taught at the Air Force Academy, and was Texas Poet Laureate in 2001. He has published nineteen collections of poems and a book of fiction, including Climbing the Divide (University of Notre Dame Press, 2003), All Occasions (University of Notre Dame Press, 2000), Blessings the Body Gave, and The Flying Dutchman (Ohio State, 1998, 1987), Counting Survivors (Pittsburgh, 1995) , Night Landings (Harper & Row, 1989), and After the Noise of Saigon (Massachusetts, 1988). His poems have been in journals including American Poetry Review, The American Scholar, The Atlantic Monthly, First Things, The Georgia Review, Image, JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), The Kenyon Review, London Review of Books, New York Review of Books, Orion, The Paris Review, Ploughshares, Poetry, Prairie Schooner, The Sewanee Review, The Southern Review, Stand, and TriQuarterly. Walt retired in May 2002 as Poet in Residence and Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of English at Texas Tech University. He has received two NEA fellowships; the Juniper Prize; four Western Heritage Awards from the National Cowboy Hall of Fame; and six awards from the Texas Institute of Letters, including the Lon Tinkle Memorial Award for Excellence Sustained Throughout a Career. Native Texans, Walt and Carol have three children and seven grandchildren. Every day's a gift. Life is grass, stunningly brief, but abundant in so many ways. They believe John Donne said it best on Christmas Day in 1624: "All occasions invite his mercies, and all times are his seasons."

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