A Minnesota-born daughter of Vietnamese refugees, Jenna Le earned her B.A. in mathematics before obtaining her M.D. and has worked as a physician and educator in the Bronx, New York, and Lebanon, New Hampshire. Six Rivers (NYQ Books, 2011), her first full-length poetry collection, was a Small Press Distribution Poetry Bestseller. Her second full-length poetry collection, A History of the Cetacean American Diaspora (Indolent Books, 2018; first edition: Anchor & Plume Press, 2016), won Second Place in the 2017 Elgin Awards, voted on by the international membership of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Poetry Association. Manatee Lagoon, Le’s third full-length poetry collection, was published by Acre Books in October 2022. Le’s poetry, fiction, essays, book criticism, and poetry translations have been published widely.
Le was selected by Marilyn Nelson as the winner of the Poetry By The Sea Conference’s sonnet competition (later renamed the Kim Bridgford Memorial Sonnet Contest) and by Julie Kane as the winner of Poetry By The Sea’s sonnet crown competition (later renamed the Kim Bridgford Memorial Sonnet Crown Contest). Le has also been a Minnetonka Review Editor’s Prize winner, a two-time Alpha Omega Alpha Pharos Poetry Competition winner, a Filoli Haiku Contest finalist, a William Carlos Williams Poetry Competition finalist, a Michael E. DeBakey Poetry Award finalist, a ten-time Pushcart Prize nominee, a three-time Best of the Net nominee, a Best Small Fictions nominee, and a Rhysling Award nominee. Le is a Poetry Co-Editor at Pulse: Voices From the Heart of Medicine and also serves on the editorial boards of The MacGuffin, the Journal of Medical Humanities, and the Pharos, the journal of the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society.
Her hobbies include drawing and painting.