Predicated on David Kermani's extensively annotated bibliography of Ashbery works through 1976, the Ashbery Resource has worked (and continue to work) on providing a comprehensive reference site for Ashbery scholars and enthusiasts who may search the catalogue of the physical Ashbery Resource Center here.

The online catalog allows both basic and advanced searches. General Search tips can be found here; the complete manual for advanced searching and catalog methodology can be found here.

Note: While basic searches through the Ashbery Resource Center catalog may currently be accomplished, complete SEARCH functions are currently under construction.


The information presented here provides a general overview of the highlights of John Ashbery's career, as well as providing biographical, chronological, and critical contexts for evaluating Ashbery's work. Although not comprehensive, the material below offers quick reference and provides answers to many of the most frequently asked questions.

Elementary Ashbery

Narrative Biography

Books by Ashbery

Books About Ashbery

Honors and Awards

Professional Positions


A small gathering of miscellaneous online materials unlikely to be found elsewhere that may be of interest to Ashbery scholars and enthusiasts...

Ashbery on de Chirico (audio)

Ashbery and Sarah Rothenberg: A Conversation on Music and Literature

Ann Lauterbach on Ashbery

John Ashbery Makes a Collage by Michael Thomas Davis

John Ashbery: The Construction of Fiction (essay by Sergio Antonio Bessa from Pratt Institute catalog)

Juniper from a seminar by Dara Wier


White Roses

The worst side of it all—

The White Sunlight not the polished floor—

Pressed into service,

And then the window closed

And the night ends and begins again.

Her face goes green, her eyes are green,

In the dark corner playing “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” I try to describe for you,

But you will not listen, you are like the swan.

No stars are there,

No stripes,

But a blind man’s cane poking, however clumsily, into the inmost corners of the house.

Nothing can be harmed! Night and day are beginning again!

So put away the book,

The flowers you were keeping to give someone:

Only the white, tremendous foam of the street has any importance,

The new white flowers that are beginning to shoot up about now.

from The Tennis Court Oath (© 1962 Estate of John Ashbery. All rights reserved. Used by arrangement with Georges Borchardt, Inc.)



We were sitting there, and

I made a joke about how

it doesn’t dovetail: time,

one minute running out

faster then the one in front

it catches up to.

That way, I said,

there can be no waste,

Waste is virtually eliminated.

To come back for a few hours to

the present subject, a painting,

looking like it was seen,

half turning around, slightly apprehensive,

but it has to pay attention

to what’s up ahead: a vision.

There poetry dissolves in

brilliant moisture and reads us

to us.

A faint notion. Too many words,

but precious.

from Planisphere (© 2009 Estate of John Ashbery. All rights reserved. Used by arrangement with Georges Borchardt, Inc).