Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Laos featured in new anthology CAPITALS

Lao Poetry Online announced the release of “Capitals: A Poetry Anthology,” a poetic examination of 185 cities by contributed work of 173 poets from all continents. The publisher is Bloomsbury in India.

 The collection is presented as “…A lyrical extravaganza, evocative of personal experiences and unique insights, Capitals embodies a medley of harmonious notes struck across the globe, resulting in the confluence of poignant imagery and soulful verse. A remarkable anthology to acquaint you intimately with the Capital cities of the world, it describes in exquisite detail their undulating terrains and pulsating lifelines and their cities beckon even the most seasoned traveler with promises of discovery. ”

 “Capitals” took three years to complete, edited by Abhay K, an accomplished Indian poet-diplomat and the author of two memoirs and five collections of poems.

Contributing poets include Derek Walcott, Bryan Thao Worra, Mark Strand, Ruth Padel and George Szirtes among others. Laos is represented with the poem “Vientiane in 12 Haikus.”

Laotian American writer Saymoukda Duangphouxay Vongsay sweeps spoken word fellowships

Over at Lao Poetry Online, they're noting that Saymoukda Duangphouxay Vongsay recently announced she will be the resident Poet of Payne Avenue in Saint Paul, Minnesota thanks to a grant from the MN State Arts Board and a partnership with the East Side Arts Council.

This follows fast on the news that the Loft Literary Center announced that Saymoukda Duangphouxay Vongsay of Minneapolis is a recipient of the 2017 Spoken Word Immersion Fellowship, as well as the recipient of the Intermedia Arts Verve Grant for Spoken Word.

Amog her projects anticipated for 2017, Vongsay will travel Minnesota to have conversations with ethnic Lao survivors of the Vietnam War. She will then create a new body of work inspired by their stories and produce video poems. Vongsay was born in a refugee camp in Nongkhai, Thailand and immigrated to Minnesota in 1984.

Because of her unique background, her work is focused on creating tools and spaces for the amplification of refugee voices through poetry, theater, and experimental cultural production. She was a recipient of the 2010 Alfred C. Carey Prize in Spoken Word and the 2016 Intermedia Arts Verve Spoken Word Grant.

 Vongsay’s writings can be found in such publications as Saint Paul Almanac (Arcata Press), Lessons For Our Time (MN Center for Book Arts), Journal of Southeast Asian American Education and Advancement (Purdue University Press), and The Asian American Literary Review (Binghamton University). She is best known for her award-winning play KUNG FU ZOMBIES VS CANNIBALS (Theater Mu) and is developing two more plays for the KUNG FU ZOMBIEVERSE anthology of stage works. Read more about Vongsay online at

Hmong poetry book Afterland anticipated this April

Over at Lao Poetry Online, we're discussing the upcoming book by Hmong American poet Mai Der Vang, Afterland. According to the publisher, "Afterland is a powerful, essential collection of poetry that recounts with devastating detail the Hmong exodus from Laos and the fate of thousands of refugees seeking asylum. Mai Der Vang is telling the story of her own family, and by doing so, she also provides an essential history of the Hmong culture’s ongoing resilience in exile.."