Betsy Sholl’s tenth collection of poetry, As If a Song Could Save You, will be published by the University of Wisconsin Press in the fall of 2022. Her ninth collection of poetry is House of Sparrows: New and Selected Poems (University of Wisconsin Press, 2019), winner of the Four Lakes Prize. Her eighth collection, Otherwise Unseeable (University of Wisconsin Press, 2014), won the 2015 Maine Book Award for Poetry. Her previous volumes include Rough Cradle (Alice James Books, 2009) and Late Psalm (University of Wisconsin, 2004). Don't Explain won the 1997 Felix Pollak Prize from the University of Wisconsin, and The Red Line (University of Pittsburgh Press) won the 1991 AWP Prize for Poetry. She is a founding member of Alice James Books and published three earlier collections with them. Among her other awards are a fellowship from the National Endowment of the Arts, and two Maine Writer's Fellowships, and the 2020 Maine Literary Award for Distinguished Achievement. In 2022 she was awarded the degree of Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters fro the University of Southern Maine.
Her work has been published in many anthologies, including Letters to America, Contemporary American Poetry on Race, Best American Poetry and Best Spiritual Writing, and a range of literary journals, including Plume, Brilliant Corners, Field, On the Seawall and Image. She has taught in a range of institutions, from elementary schools to prisons to MIT, and for thirty years at the University of Southern Maine. She was visiting poet at the University of Pittsburgh and Bucknell University, and currently teaches in the MFA in Writing Program of Vermont College of Fine Arts. She served as Poet Laureate of Maine from 2006 to 2011.