Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Laos in the House wants scary stories

It's October and the organizers of Laos in the House want to hear your scariest stories!

Submit "the most frightening moments, or maybe just tell them a really good ghost story, or perhaps that weird eerie thing that happened to you that one time you couldn't explain."

Don't be scared, all stories welcomed.

Submit here:

Monday, October 20, 2014

Apolitical Intellectuals, a poem by the Guatemalan poet Otto Rene Castillo (1934-1967)

Apolitical Intellectuals

One day
the apolitical
of my country
will be interrogated
by the simplest
of our people.

They will be asked
what they did
when their nation died out
like a sweet fire
small and alone.

No one will ask them
about their dress,
their long siestas
after lunch,
no one will want to know
about their sterile combats
with "the idea
of the nothing"
no one will care about
their higher financial learning.

They won't be questioned
on Greek mythology,
or regarding their self-disgust
when someone within them
begins to die
the coward's death.

They'll be asked nothing
about their absurd
born in the shadow
of the total lie.

On that day
the simple men will come.

Those who had no place
in the books and poems
of the apolitical intellectuals,
but daily delivered
their bread and milk,
their tortillas and eggs,
those who drove their cars,
who cared for their dogs and gardens
and worked for them,
and they'll ask:

"What did you do when the poor
suffered, when tenderness
and life
burned out of them?"

Apolitical intellectuals
of my sweet country,
you will not be able to answer.

A vulture of silence
will eat your gut.

Your own misery
will pick at your soul.

And you will be mute in your shame.

-Otto Rene Castillo, (1934-1967)

Born to the middle class family in Quetzaltenango, Otto Rene Castillo wrote 2 volumes of poetry in his lifetime. In 1967, he was interrogated, tortured, and burned alive by the Guatemalan government.

Sahtu Press to publish Dance Among Elephants, a Lao American poetry collection

Sahtu Press announced Dance Among Elephants, by Krysada Binly Panusith Phounsiri will be released before the end of the year, and hopefully by the holiday season.

A debut collection of Lao American poetry,Krysada Binly Panusith Phounsiri brings a unique perspective to Lao American literature. A resident of San Diego, he came to the US with his family when he was two. A multidisciplinary artist, he is also a skilled photographer and dancer in the B-Boy tradition and competes internationally. Dance Among Elephants will feature original poetry and photos from his journey.

Based in California, Sahtu Press was established in 2013 and specializes in works by Laotian Americans.The first book they produced was the children's book A Sticky Mess, by Nor Sanavongsay, retelling one of the most beloved Lao folk tales that he grew up with.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Lao Diaspora Call for Submissions

Do you have photos worth a thousand words? Does it tell a story about your family’s history? Does it reflect who you are? Does it speak of the journey of where you came from and where you are now?

Little Laos on the Prairie, in collaboration with Laos in the House and artist Chantala Kommanivanh, want to share your story, and those of friends and family! Please spread the word and learn more at:

The Lao community’s stories will help educate the public and officials about our shared journey that has been left out of mainstream history. This is a chance for your story to be honored and featured on Little Laos on the Prairie’s website, highlighted in a mini-booklet, turned into a painting, and/or shared in a public gallery, and it’s an opportunity to reflect, relate and learn from others in the Lao Diaspora.