It is no surprise that Margo Berdeshevsky is both fantastic poet and prose writer to boot. In her latest collection, Beautiful Soon Enough, her short stories of twenty-three fearless women “sing like an ocean”— they are beautiful, dangerous, and at times, even horrific. It is Berdeshevsky’s poetic prose that compels these women to life, brings them like apparitions into our world, forcing each to stand out like “the milkiest blue pebble in the park.” We enter each woman through the heart—raw and beating—feeling each and every visceral moment as they also must. Each woman is as alive as if you could “[…] smell her. Taste her. Maybe [even] kill her.” Each feels as if the author herself were confessing naked through open windows, captured in small snapshots–there is an intensity in the line that can’t be ignored; there is an honest desperation in these women, a fierce hunger that we feel growl in our own bellies. Yet these women are more than just a single author or a character “other.” They become our closest confidants. We weave in between each woman and collect bits of wisdom like shells from a beach—too good to not pass through one’s fingers. And so as these women are exploring “love and intellect” with the most sensual of receptors, we too are forced to ask and learn, as they do: “Love, what is love?”
With gorgeous photographs from the author’s own eye sprinkled about like beach pebbles in between these undulating stories, and with words that “bit[e] the earth like a fruit,” Berdeshevsky provides us with a book that washes over us like a “breeze, sweet as if nothing had happened.” And yet everything has happened. She is “smoothing darkness into silks” in which these women “all [live] happily and sadly after” and where we are simply grateful to have been graced by the space between its pages.
All quotes from Beautiful Soon Enough
Beautiful Soon Enough
University of Alabama Press
Here’s a link to Margo’s most recent Letter to Paris.