Personal Essays Archive
I have become a far better reader over the last year and a half because of learning how to read more slowly. Perhaps most importantly, though, I once again love to read.
They say that in the right space, a space like a cathedral, that is designed for sound, you can build up so much resonance that the air is thick with it. It tingles on the skin and lingers long after the last note is played.
Lauren Elkin has written at length about women indulging in the pleasures of walking and discovering cities. Over the last fifteen months, with the world outside so static, I have walked down online paths, led not only by intrinsic curiosity but also by an inquisitiveness that arose out of
“Fourteen years ago I left my job at a publicly traded company and began life as a freelancer. In all these years I have been trying to get to what Jenny Odell calls the ‘third space,’ an arena of both participation in and resistance to society.”
Sergio Troncoso has chosen to situate his latest anthology in an in-between place. Through fiction, poetry, and nonfiction by Mexican American authors, it explores families living along the U.S.-Mexico border and how being in the middle of worlds impacts their lives.
Coming from a culture where audience participation was an integral part of communal life, the novel does not offer my parents, Lao refugees, an easy entry point. So I wrote in a way where nothing would be lost if they added their own spin to the story.
One cannot simply outgrow or outlive a colonial, racist history. In order for the system to change, we need to stare at it and acknowledge it for what it is.
“No story that I write can give shape to all my absences. No matter how measured and articulate, no pronouncement I can make can bring back the dead. I’m not trying to tell a better story anymore—I don’t trust narrative.”
“When my son was born, I became obsessed with making. It was as if his coming into the world flipped a switch somewhere inside of myself that compelled me to create things with my hands.”
“Something I think about often is how you once said that sometimes when you write a letter, the person you are writing to may never write back. Perhaps what you were quietly teaching us about was grief.”