Charles Simic, a surrealist poet whose style gleams with dark imagery and ironic humor, will be named the United States' 15th poet laureate today. The 69-year-old, who replaces fellow New Hampshirite Donald Hall, has published more than 20 volumes of poetry as well as essay collections, translations and a memoir.
Simic came to the US from Belgrade when he was 16 and began writing poetry in English shortly after learning the language. He won the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1990 and is now a retired professor and co-poetry editor at the Paris Review. The Librarian of Congress, who made the pick, describes Simic's work as "a sequence that you encounter in dreams."