Compression can be a radical point of view, a necessity of wandering and solitude. On the other hand, it risks reaching no one. Xie maneuvers her language with a fine-tooth comb, often beginning where many poets in our cluttered, digital age, conclude: deep inside a fully-fleshed thought or image.
“Writing is, in many ways, an act of faith. You have to believe in yourself. You have to work towards a goal that may, at first, seem inaccessible and far-fetched.”
“One of the things I most wanted to explore was desire that can’t be sated. What happens when you get what you want (or think you want) and it’s not enough? What happens when you want something that doesn’t exist?”
In Her Body and Other Parties (Graywolf Press, 2017), Carmen Maria Machado explores the bodies, demons, and desires of twenty-first century women.
“In particular with these essays, I don’t think they can be finished in the sense that they represent an imprint, a moment of motherhood in my life. It’s hard for me not to want to rewrite aspects of them as my thinking or experience changes.”