Kundiman Writing Retreat Applications Open

The Kundiman writing program applications opened on December 1st and will be available until January 15th at $25 for consideration.

This year’s instructors in poetry are Sun Yung Shin, John Yau, and C. Dale Young. In Prose, lê thi diem thúy, Jon Pineda, and Karen Tei Yamashita,  will be the instructors. The program is June 20-24th in 2018.

If accepted, tuition is $375 and you will need to provide their own transportation to New York City. However, after those costs, room & board will be provided on-site.

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6 Hmong American poets you need to read right now

hmong poets 2017

Over at Buzzfeed, Bryan Thao Worra, a Lao American poet, shared a quick snapshot of Hmong American poets doing amazing work, particularly poets who had their own books out. You should take a look at his list and consider giving some of them as presents to the readers in your life this holiday season. You can follow more of Bryan Thao Worra’s work at www.thaoworra.com

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2017 Asian American poetry books

Over at Laomagination, Bryan Thao Worra recently compiled a list of Asian American poetry books published throughout 2017. This follows over a month of research and conversations with scholars, poets, publishers, and other members of the community across the US. He also posted an album of the covers on Flickr and Facebook.

This year features two books of poetry by Hmong writers and two books of poetry by Khmer writers, and several books of speculative poetry.

AAPI Poetry 2017 banner

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Poem: “Squirrel” by Souvankham Thammavongsa




We have a squirrel in the living room
but it’s dead


It doesn’t look dead
the eyes


filled with green glass beads
are open


four little paws frozen in a pose
and a fluffed tail



We put it next to the stuffed animals


they could be friends
and get along altogether now



The stuffed animals range in bright cartoon colors
covered up with balls of lint


and their plastic mouths
hang open



all in on some joke they’ve told




The squirrel
is the only one not laughing



a cost of the matter
of having been real once



and maybe
that’s the joke



to laugh
at what you don’t know




If it could talk
it would say:



at least I’ve known what it is like to be alive



24252101_10159566469225487_555121553_nSouvankham Thammavongsa is the author of Light (2013), winner of the Trillium Book Award for Poetry, Small Arguments (2003), winner of the ReLit Award, and Found (2007), now a short film screened at festivals worldwide including TIFF, L.A. Shorts Fest, and Dok Leipzig. She has been in residence at Yaddo and has read her poems at the Guggenheim Museum.

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LSA Fresno Book Launch for Lao Voices of the Central Valley


Community members are invited to attend the book launch party of Lao Voices of the Central Valley this Saturday, December 2nd at 6PM. It will be at the FIRM (Fresno Interdenominational Refugee Ministries). Contributors will have a book reserved for them. If contributors cannot make it to the book launch, they can send LSA Fresno their address so the students can send your copy to you. LSA Frenso thanks you all for making it possible.

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Bryan Thao Worra reads poetry at Wordbrew

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Ohio creates new art scene for Lao, Southeast Asian Americans

Be sure to check out the final report from Timothy Singratsomboune on the success of the recent art exhibit in Ohio for Southeast Asian American emerging artists.

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