Anselm Hollo was born in Helsinki, Finland, and was educated there and in the U.S. (senior year in high school on an exchange scholarship). In his early twenties, he left Finland to live and work as a writer and translator, first in Germany and Austria, then in London, where he was employed by the BBC's European Services in their Finnish Program from 1958 to 1967. Translations into Finnish from that time include Allen Ginsberg's Howl and John Lennon's In His Own Write.
For the last thirty years, Hollo has lived in the United States, teaching creative writing and literary translation at numerous colleges and universities, including SUNY Buffalo, The University of Iowa, and The University of Colorado. He has read his work, lectured, and conducted workshops at many universities and colleges, art museums and galleries, literary conferences, coffeehouses, and living rooms.
He is now Associate Professor in the Graduate Writing and Poetics Department at The Naropa Institute, a Buddhist-inspired nonsectarian liberal arts college in Boulder, Colorado, where he and his wife, the painter Jane Dalrymple-Hollo, make their home.
Hollo has published more than thirty-five books and chapbooks of his poetry, most recently Corvus (Minneapolis: Coffee House Press, 1995) and AHOE (Erie CO: Smokeproof Press, 1997). He has also translated many contemporary Finnish poets, among them Paavo Haavikko (Selected Poems 1949 - 1988, Manchester UK: Carcanet Press, 1991) and Pentti Saarikoski (Trilogy: the last three books, Los Angeles CA: Sun & Moon, 1998), as well as fiction, plays, and poetry (by a.o. Brecht, Paul Klee, Genet, Blok, Louis Malle) from the German, French, Swedish, and Finnish.
Hollo's honors and awards include the New York State Creative Artists' Public Service Award (1976), a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Poet's Fellowship (1979), the P.E.N./American-Scandinavian Foundation Award for Poetry in Translation (1981), the American-Scandinavian Foundation Award for Poetry in Translation (1989), Fund for Poetry Awards for Contributions to Contemporary Poetry (1989, 1991), The Finnish Government Prize for Translation of Finnish Literature (1996), and a Gertrude Stein Award in Innovative American Poetry 1995-1996 (1996).