Sept/Oct 2022 • Vol. XLIV No. 5 Nonfiction |

Departures

The Kenyon Review · "Departures" by Tan Tuck Ming It is Sunday in Hong Kong. On the margins of hard pavement or grass, along passageways and bridges that lead out to the docks, beneath the awnings of office buildings that at other times in the week cover only vacant space, there are thousands of women gathering. On Sundays, spare plots of ground are claimed with cardboard boxes flattened into a makeshift floor. One box can seat two women, maybe three, but laid adjacent to one another, the boxes become a surface the length of a block, or even longer, an archipelago to sit on, to unwind, to convene, barefoot. By the railing, someone is serving taro leaves stewed in coconut milk, distributing Styrofoam boxes to a circle of friends, while beside them a middle-aged woman carefully combs the gray hair of an older friend, who has closed her eyes to rest, like others nearby also lying down on the cardboard, some using an umbrella propped up for cool shade. Elsewhere, a photo on a pho

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Tan Tuck Ming is a writer and an MFA graduate of the University of Iowa. Born in Singapore and raised in New Zealand, Tan explores in his work the shifting structure of the family, especially in the context of migration, displacement, and welfare. His writing has been published in Michigan Quarterly Review, The Rumpus, Speculative Nonfiction, Fence, and other publications. His website is www.tantuckming.com.

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The Kenyon Review · "Departures" by Tan Tuck Ming It is Sunday in Hong Kong. On the margins of hard pavement or grass, along passageways and bridges that lead out […]

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