“Lo Kwa Mei-en’s second collection rings with ‘bravado’s vibratto.’ Her honeyed roar, itself golden and generously gilding, acknowledges an echo’s willingness to submit, and cries ‘Lo!’ instead: clever reverberation in her ‘self-landscape’ as she recites ‘a fable with no phobia.’ Here, the alien non-citizen disassembles the colony by naming its simulacrum of fear in varying degrees of intimacy: the tourist, the migrant, the stranger, the immigrant. This is ‘the futurist’s job.’ In The Bees Make Money in the Lion, the hive serves as metaphor for a postmodern diaspora—to be at the mercy of a swarm, compliant within the biblical irresistible, an actor in a dystopian myth disguised as reality. Lo Kwa Mei-en’s speaker pledges not to nation but to story. Her exquisite execution of form works to mythify this speaker, rendering her super capable.” —Ladan Osman
The Bees Make Money in the Lion was chosen by Lesle Lewis, Shane McCrae, and Wendy Xu as the winner of the 2015 CSU Poetry Center Open Book Competition and is available through the Cleveland State University Poetry Center, Small Press Distribution, and others.
Two Tales is a chapbook, a bent fairy tale, and a love letter written in the underworld, composed of prose poems and broken sonnets that recast lines from Hans Christian Andersen’s “The Nightingale” into a contemporary navigation of life, the afterlife, and the rules that structure the past. It was chosen as the inaugural chapbook of the Bloom Books imprint of Jellyfish Magazine.
This chapbook is available through Bloom Books.
“Lo Kwa Mei-en’s Yearling is brilliant—blindingly smart and lit at midnight—hard and beautiful, so sharp ‘you could baptize a battlefield in it.’ Through its excavation of memory, trauma, girlhood, the body itself, it electrifies form and narrative in poems that are rich, journeyed, dark, resilient. So brave, too, in their song of recovery: wings and war and eggs and maps and scars and somehow, in the morning, vision. I am in awe of this book, will no doubt reread and reread it.”
—Anne Marie Rooney
Yearling received the 2013 Kundiman Poetry Prize and is available through Alice James Books.