Photo Credit: Mark Kokkoros

Yvette Neisser

b. 1973

Current City, State, Country

Washington, DC, USA

Birth City, State, Country

Portland, Maine, USA


Yvette Neisser is the author of two poetry collections, Iron into Flower (2022) and Grip, winner of the 2011 Gival Poetry Prize. Founder of the DC-Area Literary Translators Network (DC-ALT), her translations from Spanish include South Pole/Polo Sur by Venezuelan poet María Teresa Ogliastri and Difficult Beauty: Selected Poems by Argentine-American poet Luis Alberto Ambroggio. She also contributed to the anthology Knocking on the Door of the White House: Latino and Latina Poets of Washington, D.C.

Yvette has taught creative writing, poetry translation, and literature at numerous institutions, including the George Washington University, Catholic University, and The Writer’s Center (Bethesda, MD). She has lectured on translation at venues such as the Library of Congress, the Embassy of Argentina, and Georgetown University. For several years, she was a roving “poet in the schools” in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, DC.

Her passion for international affairs and cultures has been a driving force in both her writing and her professional career. After studying in Egypt and Israel, her work in international development and research has taken her to Africa, the Middle East, South America, and Europe.

Her poems, translations, and essays have appeared in the anthologies 101 Jewish Poems for the Third Millennium and The Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish American Poetry, as well as in Tikkun, Foreign Policy in Focus, Palestine-Israel Journal, Virginia Quarterly Review, and many other journals.

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

Jewish culture infuses my poetry, as it is part of my frame of reference for experiencing the world. For example, liturgical language or references to Ashkenazi/New York Jewish culture make their way into my poems on any topic. My worldview is greatly influenced by the concept of “tikkun olam” and by my grandmother’s experience as a Holocaust survivor.

Published Works

Iron into Flower (Finishing Line Press, 2022)
Grip (Gival Press, 2011)

South Pole/Polo Sur by Maria Teresa Ogliastri (Settlement House, 2011)
Difficult Beauty: Selected Poems (1987-2006) by Luis Alberto Ambroggio (Cross-Cultural Communications, 2009)

Author Site

Links to Sample Works

Video Reading

Current Title

Principal Editor, DAI


Tufts University, BA, English and Middle East Studies, 1995
University of North Carolina at Wilmington, MFA, 2000

Languages of Publication(s) and Poets Translated

Spanish (Luis Alberto Ambroggio, Maria Teresa Ogliastri)

Subject Matter