Sobin was born in Boston, but spent most of his life in France. During his lifetime, he published more than a dozen books of poetry, four novels, a children's story, and two compilations of essays.
"Gustaf Sobin's poems, whose principal heaven is a dawn field in Provence, have always traced a path to the Absolute. His work, which finally must be ranked with that of Celan and René Char, causes language to exceed its own condition. Here, words find their true home in exile, a caesura accurately, and exquisitely, measured in lines indistinguishable from musical notation. Sobin plucks a music beyond hearing from the strands of a fallen world, and so perfects the art of making 'manifest omissions'." - Andrew Joron
Edited by Ester Sobin, Andrew Joron, Andrew Zawacki, and Edward Foster.
The Places of Preludes
"A beautiful sunset melody on the edge of silence. ... As we listen to the music of Sobin's language, we experience a pleasure akin to those moments when words and things seem to point unmistakably beyond themselves to the very source of mystery." - Robert Baker, American Book Review
In The Name Of The Neither
"Sobin's work enacts vocal gestures that take their bearing from the breath itself, intuiting their way back to some original grammar, long since fragmented almost past recognition.” - Andrew Zawacki, Boston Review of Books
"Sobin has always been a supreme poetic stylist. His rhythms contain remarkable subtlety, and his use of the syllable as the basic unit of sound may be more precise than any contemporary poet.” - Mark Wallace, Verse
Towards The Blanched Alphabets
"Master of hoverings, of hesitancy, of etched definitions, Sobin creates, out of so many meticulously measured components, a poetry - as much lyric as reflective - of luminous disclosure.” - Robert Duncan
By the Bias of Sound: Selected Poems: 1974-1994
"Sobin's work has an inevitability in its momentum and its music that only great poems achieve. This is not an imitation of motion, a copy of nature, but true poiesis in which meaning is synonymous with its creation.” - Edward Foster, American Book Review