The Mar/Apr 2022 issue of The Kenyon Review is a collection of poetry and prose focused on work and the world which surrounds the working individual. I found its cohesiveness, and sometimes deviation from work, to be fascinating in that work consumes large chunks of someone’s life. The pieces that stood out to me the most were ‘Ink’ by Angela Woodward, ‘Bebo’ by Jared Jackson, ‘Butchers’ by Dylan Reynolds, and ‘Automatic Reply’ by Mikey Swanberg. I found the visceral, and at times fearfulness, conveyed within ‘Butchers’ kept me on edge, while the tone in ‘Automatic Reply’ was both genuine and humorous.
Though, I found the story ‘Anaheim’ by Jennifer Croft to be slightly lacking in that its reference to George Floyd was inconsequential to the plot. Also, the setting of the pandemic didn’t seem to provide a fresh enough take to be compelling.
Overall, I enjoyed the issue and thought it had some great insights into how we interact and think about work.
Final Rating: 3.5/5
Maxwell Suzuki is a writer, poet, and photographer based in Los Angeles.