All posts tagged: Poetry

On fearlessness and art with #LAWS2017’s Saymoukda and Krysada

Next week, Seattle gears up to host the 4th Lao American Writers Summit. I sat down to have a candid conversation with my friends and summit keynote speakers, Saint Paul-based playwright Saymoukda Douangphouxay Vongsay and San Diego-based bboy poet Krysada Binly Panusith Phounsiri. When it comes to honing their craft and building community through art, there are very few Lao Americans I know who hold the level of badassery as much as these two. We talk about the state of Lao America, building a community of artists and what’s next on their project plate. Chanida: What are you both looking forward to the most in Seattle? Krysada: Meeting new people and having conversations. Live chats with people will be my highlight. Saymoukda: Learning about other artists whom I haven’t met and learning about their work. I want to find possibilities to grow together and collaborate if it makes sense. And to amplify each other’s work. We don’t amplify each other’s work enough. C: Give us a teaser about your keynote speeches. S: There’s not a …

Education and Expression: An Interview with Kanya Lai

Kanya Lai is an English teacher at Nashville School of the Arts. She spends her summers traveling to exciting locales, where she usually volunteers in underprivileged schools and/or orphanages.  Her work has appeared previously in Little Laos on the Prairie, and Bakka Magazine. She joined us in Minneapolis in 2015 for the National Lao American Writers Summit where she spoke and performed her writing. We had a chance to catch up with her recently to discuss her journey and her thoughts on creating lifelong success for students. What’s a story about your family’s journey to the US that you remember the most? I was 5 yrs old when we immigrated to the states so I don’t remember too many memories from Laos. I know that the most poignant memory for me was the struggles and hardships my parents faced when we first arrived to Nashville, TN. I know that sounds like the standard immigrant story, but it is honestly what I remember most. When we first arrived here, we didn’t have a car and my dad …