Naomi Shihab Nye

Naomi Shihab Nye

About Naomi Shihab Nye

Naomi Shihab Nye is a poet and songwriter born in 1952 to a Palestinian father, who worked as a journalist, editor and writer, and American mother. Nye characterizes herself as a Wandering Poet, and says that much of her poetry is inspired by her childhood memories and her travels. Her books include poetry collections Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East, Red Suitcase, and Fuel; a collection of essays entitled Never in a Hurry; a young-adult novel called Habibi and picture book Lullaby Raft, which is also the title of one of her two albums of music. Nye's first two chapter books, Tattooed Feet (1977) and Eye-to-Eye (1978), are written in free verse and possess themes of questing. Nye's first full-length collection, Different Ways to Pray (1980), explores the differences between and shared experiences of cultures from California to Texas and from South America to Mexico. Hugging the Jukebox (1982), a full-length collection that won the Voertman Poetry Prize, focuses on the connections between diverse peoples and on the perspectives of those in other lands. Yellow Glove (1986) presents poems with more tragic and sorrowful themes. According to the Poetry Foundation, Fuel (1998) may be Nye's most acclaimed volume and ranges over a variety of subjects, scenes and settings.
Nye's poem Famous was referenced and quoted in full by Judge Andre Davis in his concurring opinion on the case G. G. v. Gloucester County School Board and her poem So much happiness was included in the 'Happiness' edition of Parabola.

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