Mong Lan

Houston, TX

Author's Bio

Poet, writer, painter, photographer, musician, composer, singer, dancer and teacher of the Argentine tango, Mộng-Lan left her native Vietnam on the last day of the evacuation of Saigon. A former Stegner Fellow at Stanford University and a Fulbright Fellow, she received her Master of Fine Arts from the Univ of Arizona. Winner of a Pushcart Prize, the Juniper Prize, the Great Lakes Colleges Association’s New Writers Awards for Poetry, she is the author of seven books and two chapbooks. Her most recent collection is Dusk Aflame: poems & art, 2018. Other books include Song of the Cicadas; Why is the Edge Always Windy?, Tango, Tangoing: Poems & Art; Tango, Tangueando: Poemas & Dibujos (the bilingual Spanish-English edition); Love Poem to Tofu & Other Poems (poetry & calligraphic art, chapbook); Love Poem to Ginger & Other Poems: poetry & paintings (chapbook); Force of the Heart: Tango, Art; and One Thousand Minds Brimming: poems & art. Mong-Lan’s poetry has been nationally and internationally anthologized to include being in Best American Poetry; The Pushcart Book of Poetry: Best Poems from 30 Years of the Pushcart Prize; and has appeared in such journals as North American Review, Kenyon Review and The Iowa Review. Mong-Lan plays the piano and guitar, sings in five languages, and also writes songs. Her ten albums of jazz piano and tangos also showcase her poetry. As a visual artist, Mong-Lan has had her paintings and photographs exhibited in museums such as the Dallas Museum of Art and galleries in the U.S., and in public exhibitions in Tokyo, Seoul, Bangkok, Bali and Buenos Aires. Mong-Lan as a dancer has studied ballet, jazz and flamenco, and has specialized as a tango dancer, performer, and teacher, having over twenty years of tango dance experience, in Buenos Aires, San Francisco, New York City, Tokyo, Bangkok, Hanoi, and elsewhere. Visit:

Publications and Prizes

One Thousand Minds Brimming
(Valiant Press, 2014)
, Song of the Cicadas
(University of Massachusetts Press, 2001)
, Tango, Tangoing: Poetry & Art
(Valiant Press, 2008)
, Tango, Tangueando: Poemas & Dibujos
(Valiant Press, 2009)
, Why is the Edge Always Windy?
(Tupelo Press, 2005)
Asian American Anthology: The Next Generation
(University of Illinois Press, 2004)
, Best American Poetry of 2002
(Scribner, 2002)
, Contemporary Voices from the Eastern World: an Anthology of Poems
(W. W. Norton & Company, 2007)
, Hanoi Misses You: Contemporary Vietnamese Poetry
(Milkweed Editions, 2007)
, Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from the Middle East, Asia, and Beyond
(Norton, 2008)
, Making More Waves: New Writing by Asian American Women
(Beacon Press, 1995)
, Pushcart Prize Anthology XXIV
(Pushcart Press, 2000)
, The Pushcart Book of Poetry: Best Poems from 30 Years of the Pushcart Prize
(Pushcart Press, 2007)
, Watermark: Vietnamese American Poetry and Prose
(Asian American Writers' Workshop, 1998)
Amerasia Journal, Another Chicago Magazine, Antioch Review, Artful Dodge, Berkeley Poetry Review, Cerise Press, Cimarron Review, Colorado Review, Constellation Magazine, Cutbank, Drunken Boat, Fence, Five Fingers Review, Fourteen Hills, Iowa Review, ISLE: Interdisciplinary Studies in Literature and Environment , jubilat, Kenyon Review, Luna, Manoa, New American Writing, North American Review, Phoebe, Pleiades, Poetry Daily, Quarterly West, Seattle Review, Seneca Review, Verse, Volt, World Literature Today
Love Poem to Ginger & Other Poems
(Valiant Press, 2012)
, Love Poem to Tofu & Other Poems
(Valiant Press, 2007)
Prizes Won: 
Pushcart Prize; Juniper Prize; Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University; Fulbright Fellowship in Vietnam; the Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award; Grand Poetry Slam First Place Winner at the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival, Bali, Indonesia; Billy Waller Prize in Poetry; Poetry Society of America's Norma Farber First Book Award, Finalist; University of Arizona Poetry Center's Annual Poetry Contest Prize; National Poetry Series, Finalist.

More Information

Listed as: 
Gives readings: 
Travels for readings: 
Prefers to work with: 
Adults, Any, Children, Teachers, Teenagers
Fluent in: 
English, French, Italian, Spanish, Vietnamese
Born in: 
Saigon, Vietnam
Please note: All information in the Directory is provided by the listed writers or their representatives.
Last updated: Apr 28, 2018