Nina Zivancevic is best known for her poetry – her first book of poems simply entitled ”Poems” won the Brankova Award for the best first book in Yugoslavia. She worked closely with Allen Ginsberg, Jerome Rothenberg, Ira Cohen, John Giorno, Alice Notley and other contemporary American poets.

In New York, she started performing her verse in early 1980s in various public spaces, nightclubs, theatres and cultural centres. Her most important appearances include New York’s Lincoln Center and St. Mark’s Church Poetry Project where she made appearances with poets such as Gregory Corso, Patti Smith and Anne Waldman. She also collaborated with musicians such as François Lardeau, Lionel Scherer, Penta Swanson, Drasko (Drak) Nikodijevic, Poyata, Bebi Dol and Francis Powell.

Her selected poems in English, prefaced by Charles Simic, appeared under the title ”Death of New York City” (Cool Grove Press,2002). Her book of poems in French, prefaced by Jean-Pierre Faye and entitled ”J’ai été cette journaliste de guerre en Egypte”, was published by Editions l’Harmattan in 2004. Her poetry has been widely translated and anthologized.

Death Of New York City is the most comprehensive compilation of Zivancevic’s poetry in English. She pays homage to her Dharma teachers including Chogyam Trungpa and Allen Ginsberg – a book of devotion and innermost meditation. Edited by her Indian-born editor, Tej Hazarik, this poetry collection is a tiny jewel chiselled in a solitary garden of the city of New York in the hour preceding the collapse of the World Trade Centre.


About the book:

Death of New York City is a prescient diary made to be read by readers yet unborn, a spiritual journey kept by an alien observer who has recorded with supreme elegance the very nuance of our contemporary world.
Ira Cohen
Nina Zivancevic has a huge compassion and a wisdom mind stream.
John Giorno
Nina Zivancevic is a major witness of “things as they are”, the true dharmic calling. Her international poetic “voice” struggles out of samsara’s web, singing loud and clear. Om Ah Hum.
Anne Waldman
You don’t know what she will say, though there are no guises. These poems are clear, in a darkly charming voice, disavowing and avowing, honest and cutting. I like them a lot.
Alice Notley

Death Of New York City
Brooklyn, N. Y. : Cool Grove Press, 2003.
ISBN 1-887276-07-6

Available in print via Amazon.

Poetry Books by Nina Zivancevic:

  •  Sonnets en Avion (poetry)
  • Letters To Myself (poetry)
  • Living On Air (novel)
  • Death of New York City The most comprehensive compilation of her poetry in English.
  • Unlikely Stories – Online collection of Literature Art.
  • More or Less Urgent – Her first and most visceral-cum-expressionistic collection of poetry in English.
  • J’ai ete cette journaliste de guerre en Egypte – rare collection of her poetry in French (audio readings).
  • Pesme – The first, and the most interesting collection of her poetry in Serbian.
  • Minotaur i Lavirint – Interesting experiment in poetic expression in Serbian.

Full Bibliography

Audio Readings

A 1982 recording at the Naropa Institute with Ginsberg and Naropa students reading their poems includes Nina reading her poem Roxy Music (46.50).


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