Issue 06

Winter 2015

Issue 06 of Apogee offers many prisms of insight, each destabilizing and distorting the status quo. The essays take us through histories and across borders. We’re on the eve of a total solar eclipse in Zimbabwe in Chido Muchemwa’s “The Rotting of the Sun,” contemplating the lasting effects of Rhodesian colonial power on Zimbabwean identity. We journey to Tobago with Victoria Brown to negotiate the ambivalence of a Caribbean-American visiting home, torn between disdain for American race politics and Tobagonian sexual politics. The fiction in this issue, likewise, presents tensions between identities and contexts. In Kiik Aragi Kawaguchi’s poetic and atmospheric short story, “a wig,” we are fenced in with a couple in a Japanese internment camp, plotting escape. The poetry represents tensions and transmutations––formally, as in Walter Ancarrow’s “Fermented Fruit Poem,” a sound poem that riffs on the repetition of a single line while playing with sexual representation; thematically, in Michelle Lin’s “Portrait of the Mother as Mystique from X-Men;” and linguistically, in Soyini Forde’s “Soon mus come,” written in hybrid diction and Jennifer Tamayo’s “Guaravita, La Dorada,” whose voice is an android “trying to be closer to nature.”

Also featuring Jerald Walker, Karen An-Hwei Lee, Cathy Linh Che, and more. With cover art by Xaviera Simmons.

Victoria Brown’s “Nice Girl and Small Man” and Jerald Walker’s “The Heritage Room” were selected as Notable Essays of 2015 by Best American Essays!


Table of Contents


a wig by Kiik Araki Kawaguchi

Rebuke the Wind by Rowan Hisayo Buchanan

Tommy on the Bus by Norman Antonio Zelaya

First Snow by Gemini Wahhaj


Argumentum ad infinitem by Chase Berggrun

Fermented Fruit Poem by Walter Ancarrow

Soon Mus Come by Soyini Ayanna Forde

Portrait of my Mother as Mystique from X-Men by Michelle Lin

Two poems by Nina Puro

Guatavita, La Dorada by Jennifer Tamayo

I still cannot dress attractively without feeling that I am endangering myself by Cathy Linh Che

North by the Taiwan Strait: One Nation, Two Systems by Karen An-Hwei Lee

River by Leila Ortiz

Torch Song by Derrick Austin

Wallpapers or Every Time I Touch My Phone by Tyler Kline


Nice Girl and Small Man by Victoria Brown

The Rotting of the Sun by Chido Muchemwa

The Heritage Room by Jerald Walker

Things My Grandmother will Never Say by Tinghui Zhang

Visual Artists

Xaviera Simmons (Cover Art)

Kaitlin Pomerantz

Clemence Vazard

Christian Newby

Imran Perretta

Kapwani Kiwanga

Lizzie Gill

Stacey Tyrell

Stina Puotinen

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