Grew up in Odessa and Moscow, and came to the United States with her family as a teenager. She holds a PhD in Slavic Languages and Literature and taught Russian language and literature at the university level full time before switching to teaching teenagers world literature and creative writing. Her poems, translations, and essays are published in The Kenyon Review, Poetry International, Mad Hatters' Review, and other journals. Her work has been recognized by the CALYX Journal's Lois Cranston Memorial Prize, the Gabo Prize for Literature in Translation, the Cambridge Sidewalk Poetry Project, and Poets & Patrons Chicagoland Competition. The poet and filmmaker Mohsen Emadi has translated her work into Persian and included it in The Persian Anthology of World Poetry.