Adi Keissar (b. 1980)

Adi Keissar was born in Jerusalem in 1980, began writing poetry in her 30s, and founded the Israeli movement known as “Ars Poetica” — a pun on Horace’s Latin and a reclaiming of the Hebrew expression “ars,” a derogatory word for Mizrachi men — in 2013.

Here’s an interview in English, from the Institute for Israel Studies at University of Texas-Austin, in which she explains that poetry “was not planned at all,” largely because she long thought it elite and irrelevant to her, and how Ars Poetica is now “doing its own thing…working by itself,” so that she can “move on to the next thing.”

Black on Black” read in original Hebrew by poet Adi Keissar and then in English translation, also at UT’s ISS.

“I’m the Mizrahi: Adi Keissar’s New Wave of Mizrahi Poetry” on TLV1.

Several poems in Hebrew and translation here at Poetry International.

This article, Woman of Her Words, includes background on Ars Poetica and a translation of her poem, “I am the Mizrahi,” which is now one of three of her works included in a national curriculum designed to increase the representation of Mizrachi culture.

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