Words that make satisfying shapes in your mouth and on the page, rolling around your tongue and exploding like popping candy. Penned by a woman whose name looks like a girl playing hopscotch, whose work has been described as ‘urchin literature’, who drew her own cover art. Translated like the best dancing – it looks effortless, but must have been fiendishly difficult for Jennifer Feely to pull off.
Xi Xi’s poetry is often playful and fun, but there’s more to it than meets the eye. This beloved Hong Kong poet has just had a selection of her work published in English for the first time by Zephyr Press. It wasn’t easy to choose a few favourites, but this is definitely one:
It’s no surprise that Xi Xi has been compared to the Nobel laureate Wisława Szymborska. As she moves to writing on a computer, Xi Xi’s poems get longer, and her political focus changes. To read them, I urge you to find the book – and sincerely hope that this translation will be the first of many.