So now I’ve been to the Plain of Jars. Among places, it has among the most evocative of names. It sounds so plain, yet so poetic, because we simply don’t associate any plain, or meadow, with jars, and we’re not talking about Mason ones here, but stone, and huge, with the largest ten feet tall... Read More
The first white I met in Laos was a man of about 50. He was hunched over on a couch in the shabby lobby of a mini hotel, by the Savannakhet bus station. Not a big tourist attraction, the city does have an elegant Catholic church and dinosaur bones in a museum. When I addressed... Read More
I’m in Vientiane, a sleeping beauty just starting to wake up. I’m typing this at Spirit House, because it’s quiet. Three tables away sit two middle-aged monks. Checking their smartphones, they’re just chilling. Puffing a cigarette, one flashes his purple nipple episodically. In his cage, a crested bird whistles, while others, flying freely, chirp. The... Read More
Born in Vietnam in 1963, Linh Dinh came to the US in 1975, and has also lived in Italy and England. He is the author of two books of stories, Fake House (2000) and Blood and Soap (2004), five of poems, All Around What Empties Out (2003), American Tatts (2005), Borderless Bodies (2006), Jam Alerts (2007) and Some Kind of Cheese Orgy (2009), and a novel, Love Like Hate (2010). He has been anthologized in Best American Poetry 2000, 2004, 2007, Great American Prose Poems from Poe to the Present, Postmodern American Poetry: a Norton Anthology (vol. 2) and Hopeless: Barack Obama and the Politics of Illusion, among other places. He is also editor of Night, Again: Contemporary Fiction from Vietnam (1996) and The Deluge: New Vietnamese Poetry (2013), and translator of Night, Fish and Charlie Parker, the poetry of Phan Nhien Hao (2006). Blood and Soap was chosen by Village Voice as one of the best books of 2004. His writing has been translated into Italian, Spanish, French, Dutch, German, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, Icelandic and Finnish, and he has been invited to read in London, Cambridge, Brighton, Paris, Berlin, Reykjavik, Toronto and all over the US, and has also published widely in Vietnamese.