Lucille Clifton Biography
(American Poet, Writer and Educator)
Birthday: June 27, 1936 (Cancer)
Born In: New York, United States
Lucille Clifton, born as Thelma Lucille Sayles, was a prolific poet and author best known for writing on themes related to African-American heritage and feminist issues. She served as the Poet Laureate of Maryland from 1979 to 1985 and won the prestigious Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize in 2007. Her style of prose was concise, free style lyrics with minimum punctuation. She found inspiration for her writings from the lifestyle, problems and challenges faced by her own family and the other African-Americans. Her poems were primarily a celebration of African-American culture and heritage. Her first book of poetry titled ‘Good Times’ published in 1969 was named as one of the best books of 1969 by the New York Times. She went on to create a highly successful book series for children, based on the life of a fictitious boy, Everett Anderson. Both her poetry and fiction dealt with common themes like human capacity for love, overcoming weaknesses, and the myth of the American dream. As the matron of a large family, she often wrote about family life, its triumphs and challenges. Her poems also reflect the process of self-discovery she underwent over a period of time as woman, daughter, sibling, wife, mother, and most importantly, a poet.