About Gayl Teller

Nassau County Poet Laureate for 2009-2011 and the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association 2016 Long Island Poet of the Year, Gayl Teller received an MA from Columbia University and another MA from Queens College, CUNY. Her poetry collections are At the Intersection of Everything You Have Ever Loved, Shorehaven, Moving Day,  One Small KindnessInside the Embrace, and Hidden in Plainviewand Flashlight: New and Selected Poems (WordTech/ Cherry Grove, 2019). (WordTech/Cherry Grove, 2015).

She is the editor of Toward Forgiveness, an anthology of poems (Writers Ink Press, 2011).

She is the editor of Corona: An Anthology of Poems (Walt Whitman Birthplace Association, 2020).

Director and founder of the Poetry Reading Series, under the auspices of the New York State Council on the Arts, at the Mid-Island Y JCC, in Plainview, NY, for the past thirty-five years, she reviews the works of feature poets and has judged the annual poetry contest for adults, teens, and children. She has been teaching in the English department and Writing Studies and Composition department of Hofstra University since 1985.

As Nassau County Poet Laureate, she originated “Stray Feet,” a roving poetry show visiting high schools and middle schools, nursing homes, senior and rehab centers, and libraries in Nassau County, and in 2010, her workshops/anthology project “A Poetry of Forgiveness” was awarded a New York State Council on the Arts’ LI Decentralization Grant for the Arts, which has culminated in her editing Toward Forgiveness, a poetry anthology of 99 LI poets, including five LI poets laueate, published by Writers Ink Press, in 2011.

She has conducted numerous poetry workshops and seminars and been the feature reader at many universities, poetry centers, and libraries.

She has served as a judge in the Poetry Out Loud National Recitation Contest, which encourages the nation’s youth to learn about great poetry through memorization and performance.

Her work has received numerous national and international awards: the 2023 BACCA Arts Center "Ekphrastic and Back" Poetry Award for "Jellybean Lady"; the Artists Embassy International Award for "Off to Work" in the 2021 Poetry Contest, the Westmoreland Arts & Heritage Festival 2013 Poetry Award, the Edgar Allan Poe Prize, the Peninsula Library Poetry Prize, a National Federation of State Poetry Societies Prize, a National League of American PEN Women Prize, and The Connecticut Writer Prize.

She was the February 2022 Poet of the Month on the SEVENTH QUARRY PRESS website www.seventhquarrypress.com (Swansea, Wales, UK). Her work was featured in the Poets in Nassau Storycorps Event Sandy Project in 2014. One Small Kindness was a finalist for the Blue Light Poetry Prize.

In 2011, she received The North Sea Poetry Scene Recognition Award. In 2012, she received the Mid-Island Y JCC Service Award.

Her poems are widely published and anthologized, and her reviews of poetry books have appeared frequently in Small Press Review and other journals.

Her website is www.gaylteller.com.

Her e-mail is poetry@gaylteller.com.

LI Decentralization Grant For the Arts Awarded To Local Artist

Gayl Teller Walt Whitman Birthplace
2016 Long Island Poet of the Year


A feature presenter at numerous universities, libraries, poetry centers–

City College, CUNY; Queens College, CUNY; Nassau Community College; C.W. Post, LIU; Hofstra University; Walt Whitman Birthplace; Jefferson Market Library; Glen Cove Library; Book Revue; NY Poetry Forum; World Congress of Poets for Poetry; Liberty Museum/ Art Center; Providence Athenaeum; Locust Valley Library; Hillside Public Library; Westbury Memorial Library; Joh Donne/ George Herbert Poetry Group, Riverside Church; WBAU Radio– “Sounds of Poetry”; many Barnes and Noble Bookstores; Canio’s Books; “Poetry TV”– Queens Public TV, Israel Halpern, Producer; LI Fringe Festival, Tilles Center, C.W. Post, LIU; Sachem Public Library; “Poets for Peace”–Ellsworth Allen Town Park, Farmingdale, NY; Nassau County Library Association Keynote Speaker, Nassau Library System, Uniondale, NY; Bellmore Memorial Library; The North Sea Poetry Scene’s Arts Forum TV Show– Channel 20 Cablevision, Riverhead, NY; Plainview-Old Bethpage Public Library; BJ Spoke Gallery, Huntington, NY; National English Honor Society Induction Keynote Speaker, Tresper Clarke High School, Westbury, NY; Personal Enrichment in Retirement, Hofstra University Senior Citizen’s Program; Molloy College; National English Honor Society Induction Keynote Speaker, Mepham High School, Bellmore, NY; Poetry for the HART Teen Poetry Project Awards Judge and Speaker, Huntington, NY; Summer Gazebo Readings, Schoolhouse Green, Oceanside, NY; Mid-Island Y JCC, Plainview, NY; Lindenhurst Memorial Library; Mac’s Backs Paperbacks, Cleveland Heights, OH; Deep Cleveland Reading Series, Strongville, OH; Graphic Eye Gallery, Port Washington, NY; Gerson Cultural Arts Series, Council Senior Center, NYC, NY; Freeport Memorial Library; New Hyde Park Public Library; Red Harlem Readers, Indian Cafe, NYC, NY; Wantagh Public Library; Floral Par Public Library; New York Public Library, Bloomingdale Branch, NYC, NY; LI Violin Shop, Studio Series, Huntington, NY; Walking With Whitman Series, Walt Whitman Birthplace; Rogers Mansion–Poets Laureate Reading, Suffolk County, NY; LI Poetry Archival Arts Center, The Poetry Place; LI Writers Guild, East Meadow Library; “Women’s Words”– 30 Year Celebration Of the League of Professional Theatre Women, Cherry Lane Theatre, NYC, NY 


Mid-Island Y JCC Poetry Series Director (18 years); Dowling College Writers Conference; Five Towns Music and Art Foundation; Five Towns Senior Center (15 years); Great Neck Senior Center; Westbury Public Schools Language Arts Professional Development Event; BOCES Visiting Poet; “A Poetry of Forgiveness”–6-week workshops at Mid-Island Y JCC, Plainview, NY; at Hillside Public Library, New Hyde Park, NY; and at East Meadow Public Library, East Meadow, NY; Professional development workshop presenter, “Poetry as Flashlight,” Reading Specialists Council of Suffolk County, NY

Founded and directs “Stray Feet,” a roving poetry show doing readings and workshops at middle and high schools, senior and rehab centers, and nursing homes in Nassau County, NY



She discusses her "Forgiveness Project" and editing the anthology TOWARD FORGIVENESS, as well as editing the anthology CORONA. And she reads many of her award-winning poems.

Copyright 2021 GaylTeller.com - Made by Greg Kelton