Brynn Saito, MA, MFA

Brynn Saito, MA, MFA

Adjunct Faculty
Bachelor's Completion Program

Brynn Saito, MA, MFA, is the author of the book of poems, The Palace of Contemplating Departure, winner of the Benjamin Saltman Award from Red Hen Press. She received her BA in philosophy from UC Berkeley, her MA in religious studies from New York University and her MFA in poetry from Sarah Lawrence College. As an educator, Brynn is interested in writing and art-making as political and spiritual practices that integrate one's being and give voice to unspoken desires—both individual and collective. She is the recipient of a Kundiman Asian American Poetry Fellowship, the Poets 11 award from the San Francisco Public Library, and the Key West Literary Seminar's Scotti Merrill Memorial Award. 

Brynn's first collection of poetry was a finalist for the 2013 Northern California Book Award and the Milt Kessler Poetry Award. She also co-authored, with Traci Brimhall, Bright Power, Dark Peace, a chapbook of poetry from Diode Editions (2013). Brynn was born and raised in the Central Valley of California to a Korean American mother and a Japanese American father. Her poetry has been anthologized by Helen Vendler and Ishmael Reed; it has also appeared in Virginia Quarterly Review, Hayden’s Ferry ReviewNinth LetterPleiades, and Drunken Boat. In January, 2014, Brynn served as the Kundiman Writer-In-Residence at Sierra Nevada College. Her second book of poems will be published in the Spring of 2016. 

For more information, visit

THE PALACE OF CONTEMPLATING DEPARTURE was the winner of the 2011 Benjamin Saltman Award from Red Hen Press.

Saito Boo Cover1


The chapbook, BRIGHT POWER, DARK PEACE, co-written with Traci Brimhall, was the winner of Diode Editions' 2013 chapbook prize. Read more about our collaboration here.

Saito Book Cover 2


Word Performance, The Lost Church, April 30, 2014

"The Palace of Contemplating Departure" in Drunken Boat (audio included).
"Elegy with a Blue Wing" in Muzzle (audio included); nominated for Sundress Best of the Net Anthology
"Match" in Verse Daily
"Mercy Me" in Waccamaw
"Trembling on the Brink of a Mesquite Tree" in Verse Daily
"Avignon, Early Summer," in Virginia Quarterly Review
"Winter, Ithaca," in Virginia Quarterly Review
"Alma, 1942" in Hyphen Magazine (audio only)
"Like Any Good American" in's Poem-A-Day
"Shape of Fire," in Verse Daily 
"The Exile," in Catamaran 
"Women and Children" in Tongue 
3 poems in Ghost Town Literary Magazine