Jenny Xie


​Jenny Xie was born in Anhui province, China. She is the author of EYE LEVEL, a finalist for the National Book Award and the recipient of the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets and the Holmes National Poetry Prize from Princeton University, and THE RUPTURE TENSE, a finalist for the National Book Award and the CLMP Firecracker Award. Her chapbook, NOWHERE TO ARRIVE, received the Drinking Gourd Prize. She has been supported by fellowships and grants from Civitella Ranieri Foundation, Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, Kundiman, New York Foundation for the Arts, the Vilcek Foundation, and the Jerome Foundation. She has taught at Princeton and NYU, and is currently assistant professor of Written Arts at Bard College. She lives in New York City. Source


His tongue shorn, father confuses

snacks for snakes, kitchen for chicken.

It is 1992. Weekends, we paw at cheap

silverware at yard sales. I am told by mother

to keep our telephone number close,

my beaded coin purse closer. I do this.

The years are slow to pass, heavy-footed.

Because the visits are frequent, we memorize

shame’s numbing stench. I nurse nosebleeds,

run up and down stairways, chew the wind.

Such were the times. All of us nearsighted.

Grandmother prays for fortune

to keep us around and on a short leash.

The new country is ill-fitting, lined

with cheap polyester, soiled at the sleeves.





Literary Movements:


Anthology Years:





Memory & The Past

Literary Devices:


the repetition of the same letter or sound at the beginning of words appearing in succession


the attribution of human qualities to a non-human thing

Slant Rhyme

A rhyme where the words have similar sounds in their stressed syllables.