Aquarius Press/Willow Books

Apsara in New York

Aquarius Press/Willow Books

Poetry collection by Sokunthary Svay.

“Sokunthary Svay’s Apsara in New York is truly like no other poetry collection I’ve read.  Transnational and pan-ethnic in scope, the book begins in a refugee camp in Thailand, settles in the Bronx and, driven by memory and desire, returns to the Cambodian cities of Phnom Penh, Battambang, and Takeo.  The poet is both fierce and tender, street-smart and thoughtful, maternal and filial, political and haunted.  With No Others, Svay emerges as a powerful new voice in Cambodian-American poetry.”

--Bunkong Tuon, author of Gruel and associate professor of English, Union College

“The immigrant child has many tasks, not the least a steadfastness to the mother country. In Sokunthary Svay's case, this is Cambodia just barely post-Killing Fields but still abiding in the collective and particular nightmare of every survivor. And the survivor’s offspring. Another task, of course, is a new language made up of articulation, gesture, sign—here Gun Hill Road, there a mother saying, You wear the dress and stupid big boot no job. At the heart of everything, though, is to disprove that people wait to mispronounce you, / to misspell you. Svay knows this deeply and invites you to join her in tasting dragon-fruit, perhaps less poignant than those in Phnom Penh, but no less crucial.”

 --Kimiko Hahn, author of Brain Fever



Willow Books