Valerie Bandura

b. 1974

Current City, State, Country

Phoenix, Arizona, USA

Birth City, State, Country

Odesa, Ukraine


Born in the former Soviet Union, Valerie Bandura is the author of Human Interest (Black Lawrence Press, 2017) and Freak Show (Black Lawrence Press, 2013), a runner-up for the Brittingham and Akron Poetry Prizes and a 2014 Paterson Poetry Prize Finalist. Her poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Ploughshares, Gettysburg Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Alaska Quarterly Review, ZYZZYVA, Mid-American Review, Prairie Schooner, and others. She served as the Joan Beebe Teaching Fellow at Warren Wilson College and received the James Merrill Fellowship from the Vermont Studio Center, a residency from Bread Load Writer’s Conference, and a Pushcart Prize nomination from Ploughshares. She teaches writing at Arizona State University and lives in Phoenix with her husband, fiction writer Patrick Michael Finn.

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

My family history of Holocaust informs many of my poems, inflects their syntax with inverted traces of Russian and Yiddish, and favors doubt over consolation.

Published Works

Human Interest (Black Lawrence Press, 2017)
Freak Show (Black Lawrence Press, 2013)

Author Site

Links to Sample Works

Current Title

Instructor, Department of English, Arizona State University


MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College
Columbia University

Subject Matter