Maria Lisella

Born in South Jamaica, Queens, Maria Lisella has lived in Astoria, New York, for forty years. A poet and travel writer, she is a graduate of Queensborough Community College and Queens College, holds a master’s degree from NYU-Polytechnic Institute, and attended the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

Lisella is the author of three books of poetry, including Thieves in the Family (NYQ Books, 2014), and the chapbooks Amore on Hope Street (Finishing Line Press, 2009) and Two Naked Feet (Poets Wear Prada, 2009). She curates the twenty-nine-year old Italian American Writers Association’s (IAWA) literary series and is a charter member of the online poetry circle Brevitas. An award-winning travel writer, her work appears in USA TODAY, The Jerusalem Post, Travel Market Report and the bilingual La Voce di New York.

Cited for Honorable Mention for the Allen Ginsberg Poetry Award, Lisella has taught both English as a second language and composition at Touro College, and has taught tourism and hospitality at the Borough of Manhattan Community College. She has also served as poet laureate of Queens, New York, since 2015.

Read about Maria Lisella’s 2020 Poets Laureate Fellowship project.