Published Works



2024 – Praying Through Loneliness, W Publishers, a division of Thomas Nelson
2025 – The Message Women’s Devotional Bible, Navpress


Unraveling and Un-othering

Three-Fifths  (2023)

I stood three feet away from my mother, holding the dark red knotted up ball of yarn. She held one end of the yarn, and began patiently unraveling the knots, creating a new mound of usable fiber.

The yarn was perfectly wrapped in an oblong skein when purchased; at some point, it unraveled and tangled. Undoing the knotty mass was the only way to put it back together again.

“Othering” can feel like being a tangled web of yarn. People of color, and those who are different, are viewed as tangles (or perhaps, mistakes) and aren’t being seen for their beauty and potential; we aren’t seen as in the image of God.

To undo all of this, of course, isn’t as easy as standing three feet apart and rewrapping a single thread. There are centuries of layers of yarn to unravel; a thicket of pains and sorrows to crawl through….

Read the rest at Three-Fifths!

Grief - Inseparable

The Mudroom Blog (2023)

She knocks on the front door, but she really didn’t have to. I saw her crouching there a few days ago. I can feel her presence before she announces herself. I didn’t invite her; she simply comes.

She isn’t a respecter of persons; she visits you, too. She visits us all.

Sometimes, I feel she wants to own me, to swallow me. She’s cut grooves on my skin. I can trace the journeys from one loss to another.

I ask myself, is this how I want to define my days? By the distance between griefs?

Her name is Grief. And I don’t mean simply any kind of grief, as griefs are born through death, through suffering, through illness, through broken relationships, through poverty, and hopelessness, multiple forms of trauma, and countless other ways. I mean that she is born daily, in small ways and big ways.

She is everywhere and anywhere. I can’t escape her; none of us can…
Read the rest at The Mudroom!

Something Big and Real Inside

The Mudroom  (2023)

I set up my kids’ nursery with Winnie the Pooh décor. It wasn’t much, really—just a comforter and crib bumper. I used the same set in the crib and linens with all of my children. In later years, I read the stories of Winnie the Pooh and Christopher Robin aloud to my kids.

“Pooh,” said Rabbit kindly, “you haven’t any brain.”
“I know,” said Pooh humbly.

Despite the fact Winnie the Pooh is filled with fluff, I found his quotes to contain some measure of substance.

“What I like best is just doing nothing.” – Christopher Robin

“Doing nothing often leads to the very best of something.” – Winnie the Pooh  

We don’t do enough of “doing nothing”… If we aren’t choosing what our time will be spent on, it will be chosen for us.

Read the rest at The Mudroom!


You Don't Have to Be Well to Be Worthy

The Mudroom Blog (2023)

In the movie fantasy The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Benjamin experiences the unusual life of someone who is born old and then as time passes, becomes young, in a sort of reverse aging. He starts off life as a baby, but as an old baby, with wrinkles and the joints and body of an old man. As time passes, he grows taller, but also younger. Daisy, his love interest, once asks him, “What’s it like growing younger?” Benjamin responds, “Can’t really say, I’m always looking out of my own eyes.” When the span of an ordinary lifetime elapses, Benjamin reverts back to a baby but without the memory of his life. It reminded me of the saying, “Youth is wasted on the young.” In the case of the movie, actually, we find that the youthful Benjamin has already lived a lifetime as an adult and an older man but was unable to benefit from living life older first.

I don’t understand the mysteries of illness and aging, or of healing, of how the human body releases an army of white blood cells to fight off invaders like they are shooting asteroids in outer space, protecting the mothership. I don’t understand why some people get well and some don’t. But I do know this: we don’t have to be well to be worthy.

December Star

The Mudroom  (2022)

Solstice darkness persists longer
than sun’s extended rays, which
reach my fingertips eight minutes
later than when they first sizzled
out of their thermogenic home….

Read the rest at The Mudroom! Click the photo above to read the entire poem.


An Advent Series

My Monthly Newsletter  (2022)

This past December, I wrote a four week Advent series for my newsletter subscribers. I sent a weekly devotional early on Sunday morning. I had such a great time doing this. You can read the first installment of these by clicking the photo.

Ask Me What I (Don't) Know

The Indianapolis Review  (2022)

It was an honor to have two poems accepted in the Fall issue of The Indianapolis Review. Here is the first of those, called “Ask Me What I “Don’t” Know.”  Click the link to read the poem–and you can listen to me reading it, also! It was so much fun recording the poem.

When a Brown Girl Takes a Walk

The Indianapolis Review  (2022)

I was delighted to have two poems selected for the Fall issue of The Indianapolis Review. Here is the second of those poems, titled “When a Brown Girl Takes a Walk.” Click the link to read the poem–and you can listen to me reading it, also! It was so much fun recording the poem.

Midnight Prayer

Amethyst Review  (2022)

I was delighted to have a poem, Midnight Prayer, selected for publication in the Amethyst Review. Click the photo to read the poem.


Autumn Leaf

Awake Our Hearts  (2022)

I was delighted to have a poem, Autumn Leaf, in the fall issue of Awake Our Hearts online magazine. Click the photo to head to the site.

The Feast of Friendship

The Mudroom  (2022)

As I walk along the mountains and valleys of this physical life, I know this much: I don’t want to feast alone, abundant with the sweet, sour, and savory, whether sumptuous or skimpy. I want the souls of others around me, feasting together in the buffet of this beauty-ravaged life. Read the rest at The Mudroom.


Dear Vaccine

Dear Vaccine book (2022)

I was honored to have a poem selected for the Dear Vaccine book of poetry, edited by one of my all-time favorite poets, Naomi Shihab Nye. These were poems submitted by folks all over the world, in response to the Covid pandemic, which began in 2020. Link to the book on Amazon in the photo above.

My Heritage, My Home

The Truly Co. Magazine  (2022)

I’m honored to have an article in the spring issue of The Truly Co magazine! The theme for this issue is “home”, and I wrote about my view of home, the south, and my Asian background. It’s a beautiful magazine–you’ll be inspired and will love it. I hope you can locate a copy and sit down and enjoy the full magazine. (Link to the magazine by clicking the photo.) 


The Gentleness of Dusk and Dawn

The Mudroom (2022)

Mother’s Day is a complicated day: joyful for some, painful for others. Perhaps you’re wading in the depths of longing if you desire motherhood and it hasn’t happened. Perhaps you are grieving the difficulty of a relationship with your own mother, or your lack of a mother or mother-figure in your life.
I wrote a poem as I considered my own experience of becoming a mother and thinking of those children who have no one to hold them.

Of Thorns and Skin

The Mudroom  (2022)

Your Task

Your task is not to seek for love,
but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself
that you have built against it.*

We have barriers, invisible lines sprouting protective thorns, to keep us from rubbing too close to one another… Read the rest at The Mudroom.


Of Thorns and Skin (Podcast Episode at The Mudroom)

The Mudroom Podcast (2022)

I’m honored to talk about the piece I wrote for the Mudroom (Of Thorns and Skin) in this podcast called “Through Thorns of Belonging.” Grab a cup of coffee and join me. I’d love to hear what you think.

Her Hands

Inheritance Magazine  (2021)

Her hands form dough, which she rolls into flatbread. She makes homemade tea every day, boiling black tea leaves with water, milk, and a sprinkle of fennel seeds and crushed cardamom.

Life’s circumstances carried her across an ocean to another continent. She held my 14-month-old hands while getting off the plane, and one month later, gave birth to my sister. My mother taught me about a different kind of honorable work: how to survive and thrive in a country that was not her own.

The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 changed previous immigrant quotas that favored those from Western and Northern European nations, with 70% of all immigrant slots going to the UK, Ireland, and Germany.  This legislation paved the way for immigrants from Asia and Africa to come to the U.S., and would mark the beginning of a demographic shift. Today, in the U.S. there are more than 40 million people who were born in another country — more immigrants than any other country in the world.

The Immigration Act of 1965, formed in response to the civil rights protests of the 1960s, changed the trajectory of the previously signed U.S. Immigration Act of 1917, which had resulted in an “Asiatic barred zone”, barring immigrants from Southeast Asia, including Indians in British India, the Pacific Islands, and the Middle East. Now that the path was open, my mother, father, and I landed on the shores of New York in one of the earlier waves of U.S. immigration. My father, already a trained physician and in high demand in India, was welcomed to the U.S.

In addition to $25, their clothing, and a few precious belongings, my parents carried dreams and hope, resolve and grit. Their plan was to live in the U.S. for a brief time, save money, purchase needed medical equipment, and take the equipment back with them when they returned to their home village in India. As it turned out, their next visit to India would be seven years later. It would be the only time I ever met my maternal grandfather.


Matching (poem)

Bramble Lit Mag (2021)

I’m honored to have a poem in the summer issue of Bramble Lit Magazine! Here’s a blurb about the issue–and click the lick to read the poem. : )

Editor’s Note:
Poetry often brings both the reader and the writer face to face with the complex, interwoven layers of our experience. 

What I love about Rosy Petri’s cover art is how it offers a visual and joyful representation of this intricacy. This issue of Bramble aims to convey a similar quality in words. With this goal in mind, it gives a special place to multi-vocal poems.

Several poems include a remembered, or an imagined, voice to contrast and deepen the experience of the poem.  Other poems offer extended dialogue, or draw on print sources, use erasure to bring forth a poem embedded in found text, or take the shape of letters that conjure up the presence of another even if the other does not speak. In the concluding haibun, the prose and the haiku speak to each other. The centos weave together multiple strands to create a multi-faceted voice.


Perspective and Winged Seeds

The Contemplative Writer (2021)

This summer is one of change.

Recently I moved my home office from a little, dark corner to my daughter’s former room, which functions now as a guest room. I transported my desk, added a small bookcase (already full!), and some odds and ends. The lighting is better, the room is brighter—and I have a view of my backyard now. Soon the backyard flower patch will be blooming and full of perennials and annuals. I have a direct view of the hummingbird feeder and the orange slices I placed for the orioles.

The new perspective and change of venue brought a fresh vigor into my writing and reading, like a like running spring of inspiration. What a difference this small change made to my mood and motivation. A room of my own, in a sense.



Churches Should Help Normalize Mental Health for Asian Americans

Sojourners (2021)

Last month, Chicago-based writer Liuan Huska tweeted that she “can’t write or talk about getting a massage without feeling retraumatized” by the Atlanta spa murders in March that left eight people dead — six of them Asian women. Huska is Chinese American and her mother is a massage therapist.

With the documented rise in violence against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, fueled at least in part by racist rhetoric blaming Chinese people for the COVID-19 pandemic, Huska is not alone in feeling race-based trauma. Recent polling found that one-third of Asian adults in the U.S. fear physical attacks and threats, and another report found that 1 in 5 Asian Americans who have experienced racism show signs of racial trauma.

What a Plague and a Pandemic Have in Common

The Contemplative Writer (2021)

In the book of Joel, a devastating event occurs, something which will be retold to subsequent generations:

Has anything like this happened  in your days, or even in the days of your fathers? Tell your children about it, Let your children tell their children, and their children another generation. Joel 1: 2-3

What sort of calamity could this be, what sort of story so incredulous that it could be recounted to future generations? It was a plague of locusts.

Can you imagine looking up and seeing the sky turn dark as millions of these insects descended upon the land you occupied? 


Restless in Spring

The Contemplative Writer (2021)

In a Midwest spring, the sky hangs low and gray, with muted sunshine. The grass transitions slowly to a bright green when the snow finally recedes.

April is a season of change, a transition from one extreme to another, in this part of the country.  Winter winds blast us from the north, and drenching seasonal rains fall during this in-between time. While spring in the south is already dotted with lacy flowering trees, spring is still sprouting its legs in the colder Midwest.

I find the same is true for my life: it is constantly in the midst of one change or another.already dotted with lacy flowering trees, spring is still sprouting its legs in the colder Midwest.


In the Dirt

The Mudroom (2021)

“Why don’t you try listening first?” my kids asked.

Ouch. Those words struck and halted me in my tracks. I had retorted a response too soon, and immediately felt that pain in the pit of my stomach and a wave of regret.

Have you been there, too? Spoken words too quickly and wish you had not?

It was hard to admit, but it was true. I had jumped to conclusions, and responded too quickly.

Words kill, words give life;  they’re either poison or fruit—you choose.
–Proverbs 18:21 – The Message

This is some kind of power we’re wielding—a power so loud I can almost hear the thunder rolling behind it, a power humbling and formidable.

A Few Simple Words

The Mudroom (2021)

A recent Twitter thread asked for folks to respond with six words that could change the world (with the hashtag #6wordworldchange). People responded with statements such as:

“Help me understand what you mean.”

“This is hard. I need help.”

“I believe you. I’ll help you.”

“I was wrong. Please forgive me.”

“You have something to teach me.”

“Thanks so much. I love you.”

“God could not love you more.”

“What can I do to help?”

Only six words—but with kindness and grace behind them.


5 Indian American Stories that We Urgently Need

The Curator (2021)
4.4 million Indian Americans reside in the U.S, and I am part of that statistic. My parents immigrated to the U.S. in 1969 as young adults, leaving behind their large extended families as they began their own family, without any connections to or familiarity with their new country. They were following a job and a dream of a better life in America. Though I grew up here, I did not read a book written by an Indian American until I was an adult. I wonder about that lack: how many Americans still have not read books or stories written by Indian Americans? Here are 5 books to help readers understand what it is like to be brown in the U.S.

A Country With No Name: Living in Liminal Spaces

Asian American Christian Collaborative (2021)
Living in liminal spaces, particularly as an Asian American, creates a peculiar kind of loneliness.

We were out on the softball field for recess. In the outfield, no one else could hear our conversation, well out of earshot from the teacher on duty. It was another typical hot, sunny, Southern day, and I could feel the red clay burning like hot coals beneath my feet. My classmate turned to me, hatred and bitterness seething in her eyes.

“Go back to Indiana, or wherever it is you came from!” she hissed.

Loving Your Allergic Neighbor

Propel Women (2021)
When I see other parents rolling their eyes about the nut-free zone in the classroom, I’m the parent who inevitably steps in and explains that food allergies can actually kill. Reactions range from surprise to disbelief.
“You’re overreacting.
You’re severely limiting your child.
Is it really necessary to read every label?
Can someone really die from eating just one bite of food?
You’re being dramatic.”
These words echo in my head as I research streams of opinions and information on food allergies. After all, this is an “invisible” condition, similar to some chronic illnesses or those who are immunocompromised. As a parent and close friend of those with such conditions, I have an intimate glimpse of this world and am continuously learning how to love them well.

Filling the Pot: Learning to Wait

The Mudroom (2021)
Life is replete with hopeful expectations and moments of waiting. Watching means we’re often waiting for something, but waiting sounds horribly inconvenient and causes an immediate visceral reaction, a stiffening of my jaw and lines furrowing my forehead. The word “wait” feels like a forbidden, outlawed word, even though we’re all in waiting rooms of one kind or another.

Drawn From a Deep Well (winning essay)

The Perennial Gen (2020)
Writing often feels like I am pulling water out of a deep well. At times, the well seems like something out of Alice in Wonderland—is it truly there, or a mirage? Will I haul out an overflowing bucket today and will the well transform into the size of a teacup tomorrow?

Treasures from the Tree Maker

The Contemplative Writer (2019)
From a place deep within itself, the autumn tree bursts forth in glorious color, and shows a different face of its beauty. Colors emerge like hidden jewels, sparkling in the sun. The season is turning, and once again I contemplate the language of the Tree Maker speaking through the deciduous tree.

December Solstice (a poem)

The Contemplative Writer (2019)
Solstice darkness persists longer
than sun’s extended rays which reach
my fingertips eight minutes later
than when they first sizzled
out of their thermogenic home.

Open, Starry Spaces: A Thanksgiving Memory

The Contemplative Writer (2019)

When I was in elementary school, my classmates would speak eagerly of family gatherings with grandparents and cousins for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Treasures from the Tree Maker

The Contemplative Writer (2019)
From a place deep within itself, the autumn tree bursts forth in glorious color, and shows a different face of its beauty. Colors emerge like hidden jewels, sparkling in the sun. The season is turning, and once again I contemplate the language of the Tree Maker speaking through the deciduous tree.

Open, Starry Spaces: A Thanksgiving Memory

The Contemplative Writer (2019)

When I was in elementary school, my classmates would speak eagerly of family gatherings with grandparents and cousins for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Poem and Winning Essary

Exhale Journal (2019)
A Journal of the Breathe Writers Conference

Fault Lines

Red Tent Living (2019)

I think each person has a fault line. A crack-line under the skin. Maybe you remember the day it appeared to you, and it became visible to others. Perhaps it shows itself after an unexpected event. Like a death. Or a diagnosis, for example.

Long Night of Struggle

The Contemplative Writer (2019)

No one can see the internal dialogue while I sit at my desk and gaze out the window or while I sit at a coffee shop, quietly sipping a cup of coffee, while others bustle about, my laptop on the table with an empty screen facing me.

You Rock, Abigail

The Redbud Post (2019)
Once upon a time, there was a woman whose name was Abigail. Abigail not only was beautiful, but also very wise. Abigail was the apple of her parents’ eyes.

Jesus and Laughter

The Art of Taleh (2019)
I love to laugh. Who doesn’t like to laugh? Maybe an old scrooge, or a sour old person? Granted, any one of us embittered in the toils and trials of life may find it hard to laugh.

Dying of the Same

The Perennial Gen (2019)
I’m not quite sure what to do with this ache at times. I find emptiness facing me, like an abyss, and I feel as if I am staring into a black hole.

Refuge-e (poem)

Barren Magazine (2018)
Darkness scattered among bodies left behind.
We never knew if we were coming or going
or if anyone would come for us.
We were the lost ones.

Metallic Stars (poem)

The Remembered Arts Journal (2018)
IT’S the fourth of July when they
toss red, white, and blue beads
my way. They slip from my fingers,
but are caught by a five-year-old wonder
next to me.

Spring Journal, Four Poems

Relief Journal (2018)

Reaching Beyond Rejection to the Truth of His Love

Incourage (2018)
The feeling of being left out hit me in the pit of my stomach; once again, I felt rejected. I was blaming others for their rejection of me, but there was a deeper issue. I remember the day a friend named it in me, asking me why it seemed I wanted to run from her.

See, Say, Spell, Repeat

The Mudroom Blog (2018)
“Could you spell that?” My name. You ask about my name. Countless times. Almost every week, in fact, you ask me to repeat or spell my name.

How Pausing is Kindness (poem)

Evangelicals for Social Action (2018)
i will tell you now
how pausing is kindness.

pausing is the white space,
white space around words.
pausing is the margins on a page,
a space created around words.

Ask Me What I Don’t Know

The Redbud Post (2018)
What do we see when we look at others’ faces? We notice the outward appearance, whether we wish to or not. Skin color, eye color, clothing, and so on, are apparent features that are obvious and difficult to pretend we do not see. What we cannot see or know from the outward appearance is a person’s heart.

What We Have in Common

The Mudroom Blog (2018)
About four years ago, my son started a lawn business in the neighborhood. That was how we met one of our neighbors; we’ll call him Mr. B.

Top 10 Science Poems

Tweetspeak Poetry (2018)
There are those who, in expression of their various poetry-oriented anxieties, would say that poetry feels like rocket science. And sure, if you’ve been reading a lot of Hallmark cards and then pick up a sestina, it might feel like you’ve just been called to the blackboard and handed a piece of chalk in that physics class you always slept through.

Bridges & Tunnels

Tweetspeak Poetry (2018)
When I was 19
at the Fontana Di Trevi
I tossed in three coins
with the right hand
over the left shoulder

Wishes and Stars

Tweetspeak Poetry (2017)
close your eyes
let darkness fall upon blue seas

hold out empty hands
receive gift I would send

The Family Table

Tweetspeak Poetry (2017)
The family table is, for many, the heartbeat of the home. The ritual of setting the table offers a small piece of real estate for each person. This is your plate, because you matter. Utensils, a napkin, and cup are placed before your seat because you are loved. You belong here.

Regional Tour: The Milwaukee Art Museum

Tweetspeak Poetry (2016)
I make sure I arrive at the right time to see the Milwaukee Art Museum’s rooftop open its wings. Or are they waves?

Regional Tour: Grohmann Museum

Tweetspeak Poetry (2016)
The Grohmann Museum features the world’s largest comprehensive art collection dedicated to the evolution of human work—a gift to the Milwaukee School of Engineering (MSOE), which houses and curates the unique collection of 1, 000 paintings and sculptures from 1580 to the present that depict a variety of artistic styles chronicling the evolution of organized work.

Designed to Work: The Making of Bread and Tea

The High Calling/Patheos
Her hands form dough, which she rolls into flatbread. She makes tea, every single day, with a sprinkle of cardamom or fennel.

Release (poem)

Silver Birch Press (2015)
I am waiting for this single grain of sand—
drenched, beaten, bent— until
softened bubble pearl in my hands.

Gone Fishing

Tweetspeak Poetry (2014)
Watching waves crest and sink
Surfing down summer’s summit
They cast time-worn nets
Catch fleeting dreams before they slip and enfold
into deep waters

Find New Life: The Lesson of Second Place

The High Calling/Patheos
I make sure I arrive at the right time to see the Milwaukee Art Museum’s rooftop open its wings. Or are they waves?