Cambodian-American poet and writer Monica Sok was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, the daughter of former refugees and granddaughter of silk weaver and National Heritage Fellowship recipient Em Bun. She holds an MFA from New York University. Sok has published the chapbook Year Zero (Poetry Society of America, 2016) and the full-length book A Nail the Evening Hangs On (Copper Canyon Press, 2020). The collection, which examines family memory and inherited trauma from the Khmer Rouge regime, was named an NYPL Best Book of 2020.
Sok’s honors include a Discovery/Boston Review Prize from the 92nd Street Y’s Unterberg Poetry Center, as well as fellowships from the Elizabeth George Foundation, Hedgebrook, the National Endowment for the Arts, Kundiman, the Jerome Foundation, the MacDowell Colony, and the Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts. She was a 2016–2018 Stadler Fellow at Bucknell University and 2018–2020 Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. Sok is currently a Jones Lecturer at Stanford and teaches poetry at the Center for Empowering Refugees and Immigrants and Banteay Srei in Oakland, California.
Photo by Andria Lo.