Photo Credit: Ted Miller

Nancy Naomi Carlson


Nancy Naomi Carlson, winner of the 2022 Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize, is a poet, translator, essayist, and editor, as well as a recipient of two literature translation fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts. She has also received grants from the Maryland State Arts Council and the Arts & Humanities Council of Montgomery County. In 2018, she was decorated as Chevalier of the Order of the Academic Palms by the French government. Author of four non-translated titles and eight books of translations, her most recent full-length collection of poems, An Infusion of Violets (Seagull Books, 2019), was featured in The New York Times Book Review (“New & Noteworthy”), as well as reviewed by Elizabeth Lund in The Washington Post. Her first collection of poetry, Kings Highway, was a co-winner for the Washington Writers’ Publishing House competition. Complications of the Heart won the Texas Review Press’ Robert Phillips Poetry Chapbook Prize and Imperfect Seal of Lips was selected for the Tennessee Chapbook Prize. 101 Jewish Poems for the Third Millennium (Ashland Poetry Press, 2021), an anthology she co-edited with Matthew Silverman, was an SPD Best Seller for two months. Her third full-length poetry collection, Piano in the Dark, was published in 2023 by Seagull Books.

Carlson’s translations include Hammer with No Master, translations of René Char (Tupelo Press, 2016), which was a finalist for the Firecracker Award for Poetry by the Community of Literary Magazines and Presses. The Nomads, My Brothers, Go Out to Drink from the Big Dipper (Seagull Books, 2015), translations of Abdourahman Waberi, from Djibouti, was a finalist for the Best Translated Book Award for Poetry. Cargo Hold of Stars: Coolitude (Seagull Books, 2021), translations of Khal Torabully, from Mauritius, was reviewed in the Nation and was the winner of the 2022 Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize. Her co-translation with Esperanza Hope Snyder of Cuban Wendy Guerra’s Delicates is forthcoming from Seagull Books in April 2023.

Carlson’s translations and non-translated poetry and prose have appeared in such journals as The American Poetry ReviewThe Georgia Review, The Paris Review, PoetryPoetry DailyPoets. orgPrairie Schooner, and The Southern Review. An Associate Editor for Tupelo Press, she is also the Translations Editor for On the Seawall ( She has served on NEA Literature Translation panels and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the American Literary Translators Association (ALTA). A member of the PEN America Translation Committee, she co-organizes and co-moderates virtual bilingual readings to celebrate “Women in Translation” month. In addition, she is a professor of graduate counseling at Walden University, and has earned doctorates in both foreign language methodology, as well as counselor education.

Published Works

Piano in the Dark  (Seagull Books, 2023)
An Infusion of Violets (Seagull Books, 2019)
Imperfect Seal of Lips (chapbook; Middle Tennessee State U, 2005)
Complications of the Heart (chapbook; Texas Review Press, 2002)
Kings Highway (Washington Writers’ Publishing House, 1997)

Poetry and Prose Books in Translation
Wendy Guerra, Delicates (Co-translated with Esperanza Hope Snyder, Seagull Books, forthcoming 2023)
Alain Mabanckou, As Long as Trees Take Root in the Earth and Other Poems (Seagull Books, 2021)
Khal Torabully, Cargo Hold of Stars: Coolitude (Seagull Books, 2021)
Suzanne Dracius, The Dancing Other (Novel, co-translated with Catherine Maigret Kellogg, Seagull Books, 2018)
Abdourahman Waberi, Naming the Dawn (Poetry), Seagull Books, 2018
René Char, Hammer With No Master (Tupelo Press, 2016)
Pablo Neruda, Canto General (Translated by Mariela Griffor with Jeffrey Levine, Nancy Naomi Carlson, and Rebecca Seiferle, Tupelo Press, 2016)
Suzanne Dracius, Calazaza’s Delicious Dereliction (Tupelo Press, 2015)
Abdourahman Waberi, The Nomads, My Brothers, Go Out to Drink from the Big Dipper (Seagull Books, 2015)
René Char, Stone Lyre: Poems of René Char (Tupelo Press, 2010)

Anthologies Edited
101 Jewish Poems for the Third Millennium (Co-Edited with Matthew E. Silverman, Ashland Poetry Press, 2021)

Author Site

Links to Sample Works

Video Reading

Current Title

Professor of Graduate Counseling, Core Faculty / Walden University


Queens College, C.U.N.Y
University of Maryland, College Park

Subject Matter