Tracing Steps Chapbook by Narinda Heng

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Tracing Steps Chapbook by Narinda Heng


Tracing Steps is a collection of prose and poetry by Khmer-American writer and organizer Narinda Heng.

The chapbook is an exploration of her experience of "home" and family, from Southern California to Cambodia.

48 pages.


An excerpt:


Ten years old,

playing hide-and-go-seek,

I ran into my grandmother’s closet.

I stepped into the darkness

breathless and giggling,

baffled when my feet

sank into soft, smooth somethings.

More intent on hiding,

I ignored the sticky juice between my toes,

tucked myself behind the itchy

woolen sweaters, and waited.

The closet door slid open

and I was found out.

The light revealed a box of mangos,

many of them crushed.

I was petulantly

unapologetic about the destruction–

why were they in the closet anyway?

I think of those mangos

and my grandmother,

her hunched, arthritic back,

and the plates of freshly sliced mango

she would place in front of me.

They were my favorite

and everyone knows

fruit ripens faster

in the dark.


Her online notebook is, where she began writing as a participant in The Writers Workshop (