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, is forthcoming from Acre Books in fall 2022. Le’s poetry, fiction, essays, book criticism, and poetry translations have been published widely.
In 2019, Le was selected by Marilyn Nelson as the winner of the Poetry By The Sea Conference’s inaugural sonnet competition. The following year, she was selected by Julie Kane as the winner of Poetry By The Sea’s sonnet crown competition. Le has also been a Minnetonka Review Editor’s Prize winner, a two-time Alpha Omega Alpha Pharos Poetry Competition winner, a William Carlos Williams Poetry Competition finalist, a Michael E. DeBakey Poetry Award finalist, a nine-time Pushcart Prize nominee, a three-time Best of the Net nominee, a Best Small Fictions nominee, and a Rhysling Award nominee. Le serves on the editorial board of the Pharos, the journal of the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society, and she is a Poetry Co-Editor at Pulse: Voices From the Heart of Medicine and The MacGuffin.
Her hobbies include drawing and painting.