Jennifer S. Cheng’s work includes poetry, lyric essay, and image-text forms exploring immigrant home-building, shadow poetics, and the feminine monstrous. Her book Moon: Letters, Maps, Poems was selected by Bhanu Kapil for the Tarpaulin Sky Award and named a Publishers Weekly “Best Book of 2018.” She is also the author of House A, selected by Claudia Rankine for the Omnidawn Poetry Prize, and Invocation: An Essay, an image-text chapbook published by New Michigan Press. She has received awards and fellowships from Brown University, the University of Iowa, the National Endowment for the Arts, the U.S. Fulbright program, Kundiman, Bread Loaf, and the Academy of American Poets.
While at MacDowell, she explored how a hybrid, haunted poetics can examine the complexities of how the silences, absences, and erasures within which a marginalized person comes into subjecthood in America resembles and is a kind of trauma — of bodily and psychological estrangement, of an unlocatable and illegible self. Having grown up in Texas and Hong Kong, she lives in San Francisco.