David Dayton


Silver Spring, MD

Author's Bio

I became a poet at the University of California at Santa Cruz in workshops led by Raymond Carver and George Hitchcock and energized by a cadre of talented student poets, such as Mark Jarman and Robert McDowell. I also delved deeply into modern American poetry and poetics in classes taught by Norman O. Brown, David Swanger, and Tilly Shaw. Google Play Books has a preview PDF copy of my first book, The Lost Body of Childhood, published by Copper Beech Press. In the late 1970s, I launched Alembic: A Magazine of Poetry, which morphed into Alembic Press, financed by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and by my wife, whose academic career took us from Ithaca, New York, to Mexico, where both our children were born, and then to Puerto Rico in 1985. About 1990, I set aside literary ambition to begin a career in academia and government. Along the way, I earned a Master's in English Education at UPR Mayaguez, where I also taught, and a PhD in technical communication from Texas Tech. In 2019, my wife and I both retired from federal government jobs in Washington, DC. In 2023, I will self-publish a second collection of poems, The Bus to San Simón, as both an ebook and paperback on Amazon.com. I will also publish a novel there, Wideman's Gospel. Beyond that, I continue to work on chapters of a family history and memoir, tentatively titled Chaplain's Kid.

Publications & Prizes

The Lost Body of Childhood (Copper Beech Press, 1979)

Personal Favorites

Favorite authors: 
Poetry: James Wright, W.S. Merwin, Willliam Stafford, Randall Jarrell, William Carlos Williams Fiction: Herman Melville, Saul Bellow, Michael Connelly, Donna Leon, Amor Towles
What I'm reading now: 
Still Life by Jay Hopler

More Information

Gives readings: 
Travels for readings: 
Prefers to work with: 
Fluent in: 
English, Spanish
Born in: 
Dallas, TX
Raised in: 
Army bases in KY, NC, PCZ; Orlando, FL; Willingboro, NJ, KY
Please note: All information in the Directory is provided by the listed writers or their representatives.
Last update: Mar 19, 2023