Mahnaz Badihian (Oba), poet, writer, and dentist, grew up in Iran with the poetry of mystic poets such as Rumi, Hafez and Khayam and has lived in the United States for over 25 years enjoying the poetry of great poets such as Langston Hughes, Edgar Allan Poe, T.S. Eliot, Elizabeth Bishop and many contemporary poets and writers. While living in Iowa for so many years she benefited from the literary atmosphere of Iowa City and the many workshop and classes of the University of Iowa Writer's Workshop. Oba believes that Marvin Bell, Iowa's Poet Laureate, was of specific importance to her poetry. She started writing poetry and short stories at the age of fourteen.
She has published two volumes of poetry and one volume of poetry in translation. For over 10 years she has contributed to many literary magazines in the form of translations, poetry and short stories. She currently lives in San Francisco, dedicating all her time to Art and Literature. From Zayandeh Rud to the Mississippi is the first book from this poet in English.