US Nobel-winning poet Louise Gluck dies at 80

(Reuters) -Louise Gluck, a renowned poet who won a Nobel Prize for Literature in 2020, has died at age 80, according to media reports in the United States on Friday that cited her editor.

Her poetry was known for its candor in exploring family and childhood with “an unmistakable voice” and “austere beauty,” the Swedish Academy, which is responsible for selecting the winner of the literature prize, said when awarding her the Nobel.

Her poems were often brief, less than a page.

Drawing comparisons with other authors, the Academy said Gluck resembled 19th-century U.S. poet Emily Dickinson in her “severity and unwillingness to accept simple tenets of faith.”

The cause of her death was not disclosed by Jonathan Galassi, Gluck’s editor at Farrar, Straus & Giroux, who confirmed her death for media outlets. Galassi could not be reached immediately by Reuters.

A professor of English at Yale University, Gluck first rose to critical acclaim with her 1968 collection of poems entitled “Firstborn”, and went on to become one of the most celebrated poets and essayists in contemporary America.

Gluck won a Pulitzer Prize in 1993 for her poetry collection “The Wild Iris,” with the title poem touching on suffering and redolent with imagery of the natural world.

While she drew on her own experiences in her poetry, Gluck, who was twice divorced and suffered from anorexia in younger years, explored universal themes that resonated with readers in the United States and abroad.

She served as Poet Laureate of the United States in 2003-04 and was awarded the National Humanities Medal by President Barrack Obama in 2016.

In her lifetime, she published 12 collections of poetry and several volumes of essays.

Born in New York, Gluck became the 16th woman to win a Nobel Prize for Literature, the literary world’s most prestigious award.

(Reporting by Rich McKay; editing by Grant McCool)