Naomi Shihab Nye
Poet, Songwriter, and Novelist
Naomi Shihab Nye has spent more than 40 years traveling the country and the world to lead writing workshops and inspiring students of all ages. The Young People's Poet Laureate of the U.S. through the Poetry Foundation (Chicago), Nye was born to a Palestinian father and an American mother and grew up in St. Louis, Jerusalem, and San Antonio. Drawing on her heritage, the cultural diversity of her home in Texas, and her experiences traveling in Asia, Europe, Canada, Mexico, and the Middle East, Nye uses her writing to attest to our shared humanity. In 2020 she received the Ivan Sandrof Award for Lifetime Achievement from the National Book Critics Circle. She is the author and/or editor of more than 30 volumes. Her books of poetry for adults and children include 19 Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East (a finalist for the National Book Award), A Maze Me: Poems for Girls, Red Suitcase, Words Under the Words, Fuel, Transfer, You & Yours (a best-selling poetry book of 2006), Mint Snowball, Voices in the Air: Poems for Listeners, Come with Me: Poems for a Journey, and Honeybee (awarded the 2008 Arab American Book Award in the Children’s/Young Adult category), and The Tiny Journalist. Her collections of essays include Never in a Hurry, and I’ll Ask You Three Times, Are you Okay? Tales of Driving and Being Driven. Her fiction books for young people include Habibi, There Is No Long Distance Now, and The Turtle of Oman. The Turtle of Oman was chosen a Horn Book Best Book of 2014, a 2015 Notable Children’s Book by the American Library Association, and was awarded the 2015 Middle East Book Award for Youth Literature. Her picture books include Baby Radar, Sitti's Secrets, and Famous. She also edited nine poetry anthologies including I Feel a Little Jumpy Around You, Time You Let Me In, This Same Sky, The Space Between Our Footsteps, and What Have You Lost? Her book The Tiny Journalist (about Palestine) won the Texas Institute of Letters Poetry Award in 2020. Her most recent book is Cast Away: Poems for Our Time. Her next book will be Everything Comes Next: Collected and New Poems (Greenwillow, 2020).