Literature

Kimarlee was a brilliant, unforgettable writer we are devastated to lose. She was one of three fiction writers in Kundiman’s first Mentorship Lab, which brought together nine emerging writers for an intensive six-month program. In her application letter, she spoke about the importance of community, and we count ourselves as lucky to have communed and shared space alongside her this past year.
You’d think the fell they monged would be / day’s cut, mountain ash & red gum, hard / lumber sluiced down the river named / Falls, over the falls named Dight...
Nguyễn writes of Vietnamese history with such understanding and humanity that one can easily argue for The Mountains Sing's status as the great Vietnamese novel of our time. The irony, of course, is that this great Vietnamese novel is written in English.
"The tears are built-in to our war stories. Humor provides a back door to sadness that allows for a more gentle, and perhaps deeper, absorption of the story. That doesn't mean I in anyway try to lessen the horror in the story."
Butterfly Yellow is a Vietnamese refugee story but also an American one—the way the idea of America is not exactly aligned with the way America actually is.
Bao: My parents loved Vietnamese arts and poetry but knew they lived in a culture that doesn’t value that. And yet here they had a son who was going into art in the English language, and they feared for my survival, which is a pressure a lot of people don’t understand.