Australian poets can visit this site to enroll in a course to receive thoughts and comments on their work from Chris Merrill. The first poem is due on June 3.

Christopher Merrill has published a new book of prose poetry, Necessities, now available at White Pine Press.

Follow Christopher and the IWP's Overseas Tour of Cambodia and Vietnam, with the poets Jane Mead, Eleni Sikelianos, Amy Quan Barry, and Jon Davis, on Twitter (@​CLMerrill), at, and on the IWP Website: http:/​/​

President Barack Obama has appointed Christopher to serve on the National Council on The Humanities. Click to read the full article.

Welcome to Christopher Merrill's Website

"Only connect," E. M. Forster famously wrote--and this not only guides my work as a poet, nonfiction writer, translator, and editor but also the mission of the International Writing Program (IWP), which I direct. On this website you will find information about my writings and various projects we undertake at the IWP, including the fall residency, distance learning courses, reading tours, films, and publications. Enjoy!

Selected Works

“Christopher Merrill is one of the most gifted, audacious, and accomplished poets of an extraordinary rich generation. His range of sympathy, subject, and tone has always been prodigious. His grasp of form is sure and in service of clear attention. This collection shows a complex talent developing and extending its original high promise.” —W S Merwin
Poet Christopher Merrill hatched a plan: invite six other poets to join him in four days of writing in Iowa City.
Brilliant Water is written with love, speed and passion. It shines. Makes you fly.”
--Tomaz Salamun
Watch Fire” is a remarkably original, ambitious, and unified volume of poetry.”
--Los Angeles Times Book Review

"Christopher Merrill is on an ardent lifelong quest and luckily he is taking us along. His three journeys in The Tree of the Doves are deep, wandering investigations where the old world meets the new, where the person becomes politic, and where peace many times has just left the room..."

--Ron Carlson

"A gem that shows off Merrill-the-poet's gorgeous writing, and Merrill-the-reporter's sharp eye—and introduces a new Merrill, the pilgrim."
--The Spectator
“[T]his book might very well become a modern classic about what once again seems a painful and incomprehensible corner of Europe.”
--Publishers Weekly
Poetry in Translation
Buddhism was introduced to Korea via China in the fifth century and similar to China and Japan a long tradition of Zen poetry developed. This collection spans 1,500 years of this tradition with a selection of the key poets and teachers starting with Great Master Wonhyo the founder of Korean Zen Buddhism.