Garrett Hongo was born in Volcano, Hawaiʻi, and grew up on the North Shore of Oʻahu and in Los Angeles.

He was educated at Pomona College, the University of Michigan, and UC Irvine, where he received an MFA. His work includes Coral Road: Poems and two other books of poetry, three anthologies, Volcano: A Memoir of Hawaiʻi, and The Mirror Diary: Selected Essays, published in 2017. Among his honors are the Guggenheim Fellowship, a Fulbright Fellowship (to Italy), two NEA grants, and the Lamont Poetry Prize from the Academy of American Poets. In 1989, he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. Currently, he’s at work on two books: The Ocean of Clouds (poems) and The Perfect Sound: An Autobiography in Stereo (nonfiction). He teaches at the University of Oregon, where he is Distinguished Professor of Arts and Sciences.