Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Correspondence with an Artist: Naming Nature, Creating in the Pandemic and More

Would you save what you can't name? How do you create in a pandemic? What do the minutiae of art/poetry do for this big world? Artist Leigh Ann Beavers and I tackle the tough questions, and more!

Read at:

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Story "It Was A Watermelon Love" in The Boiler!

New story about young love, old regrets and lots of bad-good art now out with The Boiler !
What would you do if you had a chance to see a past love after decades? Would you meet them or run the other way so that you can freeze those perfect memories? Would you even recognize each other?

Inspired by sunny days in Provence and lots of tipsy gallery openings in NYC, this story took me a year to perfect... and it's less than 5 minutes to read! Don't know about you but sounds like a good deal to me.

Sunday, July 11, 2021

"It Was Our First Great Sorrow" and "The Best Things in Life" in Shenandoah Journal

In the first week of the pandemic, when we didn't know this would last for more than a year, when we created a bunker life in a one-bedroom apartment, these two poems poured out of me. In "It Was Our First Great Sorrow," I imagined what hell would be like if it were made of flowers, when something beautiful turns into the tragic. Then in a burst of uncharacteristic positivity, I thought about how phrases like "the best things in life" are so familiar yet unknown and undefinable. Those moments that make you feel on a visceral level that life is precious are the ones that surprise, the ones that defy rational explanations. Now, more than a year after that bunker life, Shenandoah Journal has put these poems out in the world, and the world has changed so much, yet in some ways, not at all.

Read the rest of "It Was Our First Great Sorrow" and "The Best Things in Life."

And check out the full issue of writers I'm lucky to be sharing space with, including Anna Maria Hong and a new translation of Adonis!

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Dehumanization and How to Heal - Asian Women Writers Panel

For anyone who missed it, here's the recording of the Asian women writers panel hosted by International Women's Writing Guild.

The panelists had so many brilliant, heart-breaking and inspiring things to say, here is just a small sample:

Dr. Ada Cheng: "When you write yourself out of your own stories, there is no story to tell."

Sarah Lyu: "Dehumanization happens because we don't want to deal with complexity."

Usha Akella: "We couldn't wait around for the change we wanted to see. As poets and writers, it becomes inevitable that you're also an activist."

Michelle Liu: "The reason we remain complacent and silent is because of the privileges we have."

Watch here for more. Please share!

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Asian Women Writers Panel May 5th 1pm ET / 7pm CET

A month ago, the Atlanta spa shootings shook something in me that only poetry could answer. Now I'll be talking with these brilliant writers about activism and literature, healing and solidarity, and how to write about the unspeakable. Join us at 1pm EST / 7pm Geneva time tomorrow, Wednesday, May 5th! Free and open to the public.

Register at:

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Poem "Into the Moraine" in Michigan Quarterly Review


I'm lucky enough to live in a place where it's easy to go to the mountains. It's also easy to see and feel just how fast the glaciers are melting due to climate change. You will see a stark naked line where the greenery stops, and there’s only rubble below, all the way into the valley where ice used to be. You feel the pain of it, because that hiking path has been buried under a rockfall. If you ski down the Vallee Blanche, you'll end the route at least 12 stories below the train platform, and every step climbing up the stairs, skis on your back, your feet aching in those heavy boots, you're reminded of how much bigger the glacier used to be just a few decades ago.

This poem was one way to make that pain visible to the rest of the world. It's never too late to start.

Many thanks to Hannah Webster and all of the Michigan Quarterly Review editors for including it in their latest print issue, as well as Khaled Mattawa for the deeply inspiring foreword. Order your copy here.

Le Tour Glacier, France

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Free Reading with Michigan Quarterly: 7pm EST Saturday 4/17


"Then I walked my body into the vastness..."

What are YOU doing next Saturday (4/17) 7pm EST? How about coming to this free reading to launch Michigan Quarterly's latest issue, where I'll be reading my poem on climate change, glaciers and what it takes to heal. Join from where you are, however you are.