Michal Mahgerefteh

b. 1961

Current City, State, Country

Alexandria, Virginia, USA

Birth City, State, Country

Tel Aviv, Israel


Michal Mahgerefteh is an Israeli-born writer and editor who served in the Israeli Defense Forces before moving to the United States in 1986. She is the managing editor of Poetica Magazine and Publishing, which focuses on contemporary Jewish writing, and is also the selected editor for The Miriam Rachimi Micro Chapbook Award. Mahgerefteh’s poetry centers on her Sephardic culture, family traditions, Jewish identity, spirituality, and world travel. She has authored six chapbooks exploring these themes and has collaborated with poets and artists on various art exhibitions and theatrical productions.

What is the relationship between Judaism and/or Jewish culture and your poetry?

My Moroccan-Sephardic heritage, culture, and traditions are a defining aspect of my identity. Since I was a child, my family and I regularly discussed topics such as Kabbalah, spirituality, and the psalms, while also reflecting on lessons from the weekly Parasha. Additionally, I often incorporate my identity into my poetry, as it is a powerful medium for self-expression. Through sharing stories and traditions, I have gained a deeper understanding of my cultural values, which has helped shape who I am today.

Published Works

Poetry, Chapbooks
FishMoon (Poetica, 2023)
The Rising Song (Poetica, 2022)
Sipping Memories (Poetica, 2022)
What’s Left Behind (Poetica, 2021)
Field of Harps (Poetica, 2020)
What’s Left Behind (Poetica, 2019)
In My Bustan (Poetica, 2019)

Author Site

Links to Sample Works

Current Title

Managing Editor at Poetica Publishing and Marketing Director at CEO Executive offices


Tel Aviv University, Creative Writing and Psychology, 1984
Old Dominion University and Tidewater College, Creative Writing
Poetry workshops and courses taught by Poet Laureates of Virginia

Subject Matter