The year was 1975, a month before the fall of Saigon, Samantha Lê celebrated her first birthday by selecting items from an assortment of artifacts that would determine her future profession.  She chose a whistle and a pen—so the story goes.  From the Mekong Delta to the Tenderloin, Lê immigrated to San Francisco at the age of nine.  A recipient of the James D. Phelan Literary Award and the Donor Circle for the Arts Grant, Lê holds an MFA in Creative Writing from San José State University.  Her publications include Corridors (2001) and Little Sister Left Behind (2007).  Her poetry has appeared in numerous literary journals, including: Bayou Magazine, Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, Hypertrophic Literary, The Minnesota Review and The Suburban Review.


Having recently completely The Outsiders, a collection of persona poems in the voices of people whose existence is defined by the small space allotted them on the fringe of society, Lê is currently working on A False Dawn, a poetry collection about  the Vietnamese-American immigrant experience.


Related Links:


  • Poetry on the Move Prize, judge: Sally Ashton
  • Santa Clara County Poetry Prize, judge: Nils Peterson
  • West Chester University Poetry Conference Scholarship Award, program director: Dana Gioia
  • WC&C Scholarship Award
  • Donor Circle for the Arts Grant, Silicon Valley Community Foundation
  • James D. Phelan Literary Awards
  • National Federation of State Poetry Societies Award
  • The National League of American Pen Women National Poetry Awards