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Rafael Campo (born 1964 New Jersey) is an American poet, doctor, and author.

He graduated from Amherst College and Harvard Medical School. He practices medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts. His writing focuses on themes that promote equality and justice for gay people, people of color, and working-class people.

He served as a resident poet at Brandeis University and the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. He frequently reads at colleges, including Brown University, Stanford University, and Colby-Sawyer College. He currently instructs in the Lesley University low-residency MFA writing program in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


Rafael Campo, 1992, by Robert Giard (
American photographer Robert Giard is renowned for his portraits of American poets and writers; his particular focus was on gay and lesbian writers. Some of his photographs of the American gay and lesbian literary community appear in his groundbreaking book Particular Voices: Portraits of Gay and Lesbian Writers, published by MIT Press in 1997. Giard’s stated mission was to define the literary history and cultural identity of gays and lesbians for the mainstream of American society, which perceived them as disparate, marginal individuals possessing neither. In all, he photographed more than 600 writers. (

Further Readings:

The Healing Art: A Doctor's Black Bag of Poetry by Rafael Campo
Hardcover: 128 pages
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 1 edition (August 2003)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0393057275
ISBN-13: 978-0393057270
Amazon: The Healing Art: A Doctor's Black Bag of Poetry

A celebrated poet and doctor connects—through favorite verses and stories from his life and practice—poetry and healing.
As a respected and much-loved doctor, Rafael Campo shares favorite poems with patients on his rounds. After all, incantation has played a role in healing for millennia, displaced only recently by modern scientific obsessions.

In this luminous book, Campo restores the link between poetry and healing, offering "pharmaceutical" samples of work by a diverse group of poets such as Mark Doty, Marilyn Hacker, Miroslav Holub, Audre Lorde, Lucia Perillo, and William Carlos Williams. He leads us through the stages of illness and recuperation, from first inklings of mortality through symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment, and finally recovery or—and here medicine recoils but poetry perseveres—death, and even immortality.

At each stage, Campo reveals the richness of individual poems and the potent medicine they offer. Ultimately, he proposes a "biocultural" model of illness as provocative as it is humane—one that restores the art of poetry to its rightful place at the heart of a healthy society. 10 b/w illustrations.

More Particular Voices at my website:, My Ramblings/Particular Voices


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