Born in 1933 and raised in London, David Bromige experienced the ravages and displacement of buzz bombs and rockets exploding around him. He emigrated to Canada in 1953, eventually settling in Vancouver where he attended the University of British Columbia. In his senior year he won the Woodrow Wilson Fellowship, which took him to Berkeley, where he earned a Master’s degree and was a T.A. for Denise Levertov and Thom Gunn. His decades long friendship with Robert Duncan started then, and his first book, The Gathering was published in 1965 by Fred Wah. In 1970 he was hired by Sonoma State University to teach poetry and poetry writing. He stayed there 25 years and had a successful professorial and writing career, living primarily in Sebastopol, California.
He published 33 books, many of them from Black Sparrow Press. He won numerous awards
and toured the U.S., Canada, France and England often. He enjoyed steeping himself in
different schools of poetics: no book was ever like the last one. “The trouble is, you see, is
that the made-up mind tends to deliver itself only of its own clichés en route to its prior
conclusion”, he wrote. “Take one step to the left or right and perceptions change entirely.
Poetic knowing and its alternatives are as close as—as if is to is.”
David Bromige died in 2009 from complications from diabetes, leaving behind his wife,
Cecelia, children Christopher and Margaret and many friends and admirers.