Vietnamese American writer Ocean Vuong’s debut poetry collection, Night Sky with Exit Wounds, won multiple awards, and his debut novel, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous, hit The New York Times bestseller list. His work is semi-autobiographical, exploring and illuminating a lesser-known America through a queer, immigrant perspective. In 2019, he was awarded a “genius” grant of $625, 000 by the MacArthur Foundation. He says that means lots of things, including more pizza for his MFA students at the University of This story is from Kinfolk Issue Thirty-six Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 19 Going Incognito We all secretly wonder what mischief we’d make if invisible: When our identity is hidden, everything seems possible. Arts & Culture Issue 19 The Best Policy Sometimes we talk to each other without feeling heard. Honesty—a most intimate interaction—can be just as thrilling as its more devious inverse. Arts & Culture Issue 19 A Sense of Suspense With unhinged imaginations and mountains of cliff-hangers, the filmmakers behind the sci-fi podcast Limetown have all the makings of a scary story. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Like Clockwork In this new column about time, we learn how slipping off our watches makes us feel like deadline-damning renegades. Arts & Culture Music Issue 19 On a Grander Scale Malaysian singer-songwriter Yuna now may live on the opposite side of the globe, but she’s determined to evolve while staying true to her roots. Arts & Culture Issue 19 Neighborhood: Fire Stations The firefighting profession has evolved over time from Ancient Rome’s rudimentary bucket brigades to today’s sleek life-saving departments.