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A Poem in the Shape of Two Grave Plots

Artwork by Aldwin Li, staff artist

Note: "A Poem in the Shape of Two Grave Plots" is written in a form I’ve unofficially nicknamed “Square Poetry.” The first and last words of each line in either stanza form the first and last lines of the opposite stanza, respectively.


Sam Bowden is a freshman at Kenyon College, where he also attended the Kenyon Review Young Writers workshop. He wants to double major in neuroscience and creative writing, but we'll see how that goes. A six-time novelist and a two-time decent novelist, he spends most of his time researching fictional slang, teaching beginning piano to elementary-age kids through his local fine arts center, or playing cello. He was recently honored as a Gold Medal Portfolio winner in the 2020 National Scholastic Writing Awards.

Aldwin is a wannabe artist from Hong Kong about to be dumped in the deep end of his first-year English literature course. On his quest to become a writer-artist he unfortunately has yet to retreat into a mountain hermitage, perfect his craft and forget that everything exists. He has attended programs at the Interlochen Summer Arts Camp and Iowa Young Writers' Studio, but for the most part he is a self-taught dabbler. (Becoming a mountain hermit will have to wait.) He seeks to express through art and writing and help others do the same, almost as much as he has a slightly unhealthy addiction to self-deprecating dry humour. In his free time he does anything, from performance martial arts to creating fictional languages to playing jazz piano. He probably needs to drink less coffee.

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