When Trisha Low moves West, her journey is motivated by the need to arrive “somewhere better”—someplace utopian, like revolution; or safe, like home; or even clarifying, like identity. Instead, she faces the end of her relationships, a family whose values she has difficulty sharing, and America’s casual racism, sexism, and homophobia.
In this book-length essay, the problem of how to account for one’s life comes to the fore—sliding unpredictably between memory, speculation, self-criticism, and art criticism, Low seeks answers that she knows she won’t find. Attempting to reconcile her desires with her radical politics, she asks: do our quests to fulfill our deepest wishes propel us forward, or keep us trapped in the rubble of our deteriorating world?
Trisha Low is the author of The Compleat Purge (Kenning Editions 2013). She earned a BA at the University of Pennsylvania and an MA in performance studies at New York University. She lives in the East Bay.
Ruth Curry is a writer, editor, and former Coffee House Press intern. Together with Emily Gould, she cofounded Emily Books in 2011. She grew up in Illinois, received her BA from Carleton College, and now lives in Brooklyn, New York.