Switchback review of Sze-Lorrain’s Lan Lan

Canyon in the BodyChristina Cook at Switchback reviews Canyon in the Body 身体里的峡谷 by Lan Lan 蓝蓝, translated by Fiona Sze-Lorrain. Here’s how it wraps up:

One might call this collection of poems evidence of lyrical poetry at its finest or political poetry at its finest. However, Lan Lan’s, and Sze-Lorrain’s, evasive and eminently creative use of language and punctuation helps the book dodge ultimate categorization—in much the same way that the speaker in the poems defies being identified in a traditional, or even non-traditional way. It is poetry that complies without being compliant; subverts without being subversive. It is poetry written by a Chinese woman and translated into a Parisian woman who writes English. In mirroring the cultural complexities of our world, it is poetry that must, especially now, be read.

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