Richard O. Moore Headshot

Richard O. Moore

Richard O. Moore, a documentary filmmaker for public television, was one of the founders of KPFA—the first publicly supported radio station in the United States. He was born in Alliance, Ohio, and attended the University of California, Berkeley, where he studied poetry with Josephine Miles. He was associated with the San Francisco Renaissance and frequented Kenneth Rexroth’s Friday meetings for poets, philosophers, and poetry aficionados. During World War II, Moore was classified 4-F and counseled conscientious objectors. He wrote poetry for decades but shared little of it until poet Brenda Hillman encouraged him to publish. In 2010, Hillman and Paul Ebenkamp edited Moore’s book Writing the Silences, a collection representing more than 60 years of his work. A second collection, Particulars of Place, was published by Omnidawn in 2015.

Moore’s early exposures to Miles’s teachings, Rexroth’s poetry, and philosophers such as Ludwig Wittgenstein all influenced his writing. Hillman, in her foreword to Writing the Silences, explains that “Moore developed a signature style of poetry: open, spare verse that foregrounds philosophical inquiry.” Writing the Silences was a Northern California Book Award nominee.

Moore lived in The Redwoods in northern California, where he and other like-minded residents of the retirement community protested the war in Iraq once a week. He died in 2015.

source: Poetry Foundation