Jack Gilbert was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on February 17, 1925. He received a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Pittsburgh in 1954 and a master's from San Francisco State in 1963. He also attended Jack Spicer's Magic Poetry Workshop. His first collection of poetry, Views of Jeopardy, won the 1961 Yale Younger Poets Prize and was published in 1962. His other works include Monolithos, which won the Stanley Kunitz Prize and the American Poetry Review Prize; The Dance Most of All; Transgressions: Selected Poems; Refusing Heaven, which won the National Book Critics Circle Award; and The Great Fires: Poems 1982-1992. He died after developing pneumonia on November 13, 2012 at the age of 87.