Poet Robyn Schiff was born in New Jersey. She earned an MFA at the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop and an MA at the University of Bristol. She is the author of the poetry collections A Woman of Property (2016), Revolver (2008), a finalist for the PEN Award, and Worth (2002). Her work has been featured in several anthologies, including Women Poets on Mentorship: Efforts and Affections (2007) and Legitimate Dangers: American Poets of the New Century (2006).
Poet and critic Stephen Burt has described Schiff’s poems as “well made and uncommonly elaborate.” Her work frequently treats objects and historical figures in virtuosic lyric detail. In an interview with the Poetry Society of America, Schiff stated, “more so than a specific practice in one of the other arts, curation as an art form in itself has most informed me. Of course at museums I’m moved by so many individual works—but it’s the crosstalk between seemingly disparate objects that really inspires me.”
Schiff’s honors include an award from the Academy of American Poets Greenwall Fund and inclusion in the Poetry Society of America’s 2007 Festival of New American Poets. Coeditor of Canarium Books and the literary journal The Canary, Schiff is a professor at the University of Iowa and lives with her husband, poet and filmmaker Nick Twemlow, in Iowa City.