Philip Schultz

2008 Pulitzer Prize for poetry

[My tutor] worked with me to try to teach me how to read, without any success at all. And one day out of frustration asked me what I thought I was going to do in life if I couldn’t read. And surprising both of us, I said I wanted to be a writer. And he laughed.

I would remember wanting to will myself into being able to read … I was now in the fifth grade; I’d been held back … technically twice; kicked out of one school; going to another one. And there was no third school to go to.