E. J. Koh Recommends...

“In the past decade, a relationship formed between my living and my writing. Over the years, I questioned and tested this relationship—for its reality and then its boundaries. For example, right now, I am stuck in my writing. Whether it’s poetry, translation, or prose, the next words won’t come, and if I try to force the words, the doom will grow with ferocity. It’s not that I’m stuck in my writing; I am stuck somewhere in my living. Then I do what I fear doing. I must make amends with my mother, or I must challenge my terror with flying, or I will do that thing I do not want to do. At times, it’s a thing as surprising as love. Love the child that continues to live in oneself. Speak to the child that lives in another. Suddenly I come to the clarity of conscience, of living, of being a life, and from this place, I can step into the act of creation. My writing then serves my living. My works become the artifacts of my life, and the masterpiece is in the everyday.”
—E. J. Koh, author of The Magical Language of Others (Tin House Books, 2020)