Haleh Liza Gafori

Haleh Liza Gafori, is an Iranian American translator, poet, performance artist, and composer born in New York City. Her book Gold, which features her translations of poems by the thirteenth-century sage and mystic, Rumi, was published by New York Review Books Classics/Penguin Random House in 2022. She has also been published in Harvard Review, The Brooklyn RailLiterary Hub, Hyperallergic, and The Marginalian. One of her poems was anthologized in Love and Forgiveness for a More Just World (Columbia University Press, 2015), edited by Hent de Vries and Nils F. Schott.

A 2024 MacDowell Fellow, Gafori has completed her second volume of translations to be released in 2025 by NYRB. In 2023, she received a grant from the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) and, with their support, developed a cross-media performance piece weaving translations from Gold with original text, anecdotes, and musical compositions that she sings in Persian. The piece debuted at the New York Public Library for World Heritage Month. 

Gafori performs, lectures, and leads workshops at universities and festivals across the United States and abroad, including Stanford University, Sarah Lawrence College, Swarthmore College, Lincoln Center, Le Poisson Rouge (LPR), the New York Public Library, the Women’s Library and Information Center Foundation (WLICF) in Istanbul, and Bradford Literary Fest.