Garth Greenwell is not feigning humility when he says the critical reception of his books is still “bewildering” to him. “I was a poet for 20 years, and knew that nobody was ever going to read my work, ” Greenwell says.1 When working on What Belongs to You and Cleanness, which both follow an American teacher living in Sofia, Bulgaria, he wrote without an audience in mind. The narrator is never named, but that does not suggest a kind of opacity. This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty-Four Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 47 Rhythm Doctor The pacifying effect of poetry. Arts & Culture Issue 37 Joekenneth Museau The Brooklyn poet on a mission to heal. Arts & Culture Issue 36 Ocean Vuong The poet and novelist avoiding definitive endings. Arts & Culture Issue 31 Archive: Langston Hughes Neda Semnani charts the life of a merchant sailor turned Harlem literary colossus. Arts & Culture Issue 30 Eileen Myles Meet Eileen Myles, the poet who once ran for president. Arts & Culture Issue 29 Day in the Life: Shirin Neshat Charles Shafaieh pays a visit to the home of one of New York’s most widely recognized artists.