1. two new poems

    i have two new poems in the Boston Review with a kind introduction by Amy King.

    "You’re so quiet / you’re almost / tomorrow."

    Ocean Vuong,  from Into The Breach, Boston Review


  2. And yet, in a time where the mainstream seems to continually question the power and validity of art, and especially of poetry, its need, its purpose, in a generation obsessed with appearances, of status updates and smiling selfies bathed (corrected?) in the golden light of filters, in which it has become more and more difficult for us to say aloud, to one another: I am hurt. I am scared. What happens now?, the poem, like the fire escape, as feeble and thin as it is, has become my most concentrated architecture of resistance. A place where I can be as honest as I need to—because the fire has already begun in my home, swallowing my most valuable possessions—and even my loved ones. My uncle is gone. I will never know exactly why. But I still have my body and with it these words, hammered into a structure just wide enough to hold the weight of my living. I want to use it to talk about my obsessions and fears, my odd and idiosyncratic joys. I want to leave the party through the window and find my uncle standing on a piece of iron shaped into visible desperation, which must also be (how can it not?) the beginning of visible hope. I want to stay there until the building burns down. I want to love more than death can harm. And I want to tell you this often: That despite being so human and so terrified, here, standing on this unfinished staircase to nowhere and everywhere, surrounded by the cold and starless night—we can live. And we will.

  3. Fire escapes. Not buildings exactly, but accessories. Iron rods fused into vessels of descent—and departure. Some were painted blue or yellow or green, but most were black. Black staircases. I could spend a whole hour sitting across the street from a six-floor walk-up studying the zig-zags that clung to a building filled with so many hidden lives. All that richness and drama sealed away in a fortress whose walls echoed with communication of elemental or exquisite language—and yet only the fire escape, a clinging extremity, inanimate and often rusting, spoke—in its hardened, exiled silence, with the most visible human honesty: We are capable of disaster. And we are scared.

  4. upcoming appearances

    September 27, 2014: Astoria Bookshop (Astoria, NY)
    31-29 31st St, New York, NY 11106
    7:00 PM
    co-feature with Matthew Hittinger & Guillermo Castro

    October 3-5, 2014: Brattleboro Literary Festival (Brattleboro, VT)
    Details coming soon.

    October 8, 2014: Cantab Lounge (Cambridge, MA)
    738 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139
    8:00 PM
    feature reader

    October 27, 2014: Louder Arts/Bar 13 (New York, NY)
    35 E 13th St, New York, NY 10003
    7:30 PM
    co-feature w/ Tanya Olson

    November 12, 2014: San Diego Multicultural Center (San Diego, CA)
    1261 34th St., San Diego, CA, 92102
    key note speaker / feature reader

    November 16-23, 2014: Miami Book Fair International (Miami FL)
    Details coming soon.

    February 2015: University of Missouri-St. Louis (St. Louis, MO)
    1 University Blvd, St Louis, MO 63121
    feature reader

    April 2015: AWP 2015 Annual Conference (Minneapolis, MN)
    Minneapolis Convention Center
    1301 Second Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55403
    conference panelist / reader

    May 4, 2015: Library of Congress (Washington, D.C.)
    Details coming soon.

    2015: Civitella Ranieri Foundation (Umbria, Italy)
    Localita Civitella Ranieri, Umbertide, 06019 PG, Italy
    feature reader
    Details coming soon.


  5. (Source: jueki, via moonii)


  6. I want to love more than death can harm.
    — Ocean Vuong

  7. cross-connect:

    Featured Curator: Justin Ruckman

    Phan Thu Trang uses heavy knife strokes to create these bright and pointed Vietnamese landscapes. While seemingly naïve and decorative, true to character for many Vietnamese paintings, Trang takes a minimalist, deconstructive approach that simplifies each scene to its geometric and tonal essentials. From there she draws from her memories of growing up in Hanoi and the Northern Villages, describing the people and feelings she experienced as a child.

    (via slloth)


  8. "We were taking the black young men who had been crippled by our society and sending them eight thousand miles away to guarantee liberties in Southeast Asia which they had not found in southwest Georgia and East Harlem. So we have been repeatedly faced with the cruel irony of watching Negro and white boys on TV screens as they kill and die together for a nation that has been unable to seat them together in the same schools. So we watch them in brutal solidarity burning the huts of a poor village, but we realize that they would hardly live on the same block in Chicago."

    Martin Luther King Jr. | Beyond Vietnam (1967)

    (Source: america-wakiewakie, via chillout-sleepy)


  9. myvoicemyright:

    Acid attack survivors in India model new clothing range for powerful photoshoot

    Survivors of acid attacks in India have become the face of a new clothing range designed by a woman who had acid thrown in her face while she was asleep four years ago.Delhi-based designer Rupa and her friends Rita, Sonam, Laxmi and Chanchal modelled the clothes from her new range, Rupa Designs, for photographer Rahul Saharan.

    Rupa suffered extensive injuries when her stepmother threw acid in her face while she was sleeping in 2008.

    She was allegedly left without any medical aid for six hours before her uncle found her and transported her to hospital, where she underwent eleven operations and spent three months being cared for.

    (via chillout-sleepy)


  10. (Source: medium.com, via metanoiaboy)


  11. (Source: darachtheboat, via kadjaj)


  12. You’re only given a little spark of madness. You mustn’t lose it.

    Robin Williams

    Rest in Peace

    (via willgrahcm)

    (Source: meduesa, via iverae)



  14. "You can get lost in every book

    but you can never forget yourself

    the way god forgets

    his hands.”

    —Ocean Vuong


  15. takehito miyatake
    tsuneaki hiramatsu
    spencer balck
    vincent brady
    tsuneaki hiramatsu
    vincent brady
    spencer black
    tsuneaki hiramatsu
    vincent brady
    tsuneaki hiramatsu


    fireflies in timelapse, photos by (click pic) vincent bradytakehito miyataketsuneaki hiramatsu and spencer black

    (Source: nubbsgaloretumblr.com, via metanoiaboy)