Poetry. Asian & Asian American Studies. As a child of immigrants, Yaya Yao always "craved an unbroken narrative: an arc that would give my existence a sense of context and continuity." In this brilliant and provocative first collection she confronts her inherited fragmented self and her hunger for a home, using scraps of personal and communal memory to bridge languages, worldviews, and physical distance from the ancestral homeland. Bits of Cantonese, Mandarin, Hokkien, and Shanghainese are translated and altered to explore the dynamics between language and identity. In this collection, Yaya Yao has created a unique and authentic voice.
Yaya Yao was born and raised in Toronto's Parkdale and Little Portugal neighbourhoods with a lot of languages around her: Cantonese, Mandarin Hokkien, Shanghainese and French and English. Yaya's poems have been published in several journals, including TOK7, Contemporary Verse 2, and the Toronto Review of Books. Her short play, Tongued, received staged readings through playwrights' units with Nightwood and fu-GEN Theatre companies, and she is co-author, with Helen Anderson, of the Educator's Equity Companion Guide. Author City: Toronto CAN