Eleven-year-old editor-in-chief Marley Dias is no stranger to interviewing high-profile folks — just ask Ava DuVernay and Misty Copeland. And now she’s back at it, chopping it up with none other than Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.
For her collaboration with ELLE’s Marley Mag, Dias spoke with Clinton, calling "her deep and funny at the same time" and commenting on what "an honor" it was to be given an opportunity to speak with who could be this nation's first female president.
The ladies spoke candidly about a range of topic, including the former Secretary of State’s favorite Black girl book, her middle school insecurities and the three things she’d need with her on a deserted island.
“One of my favorite authors is Maya Angelou, and I love her book I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. It tells the story of how Maya became such a strong, confident, determined person. Some parts are painful and hard to read, but of course that's the case in a lot of great books,” Clinton replied when asked what was her favorite Black girl book.
Clinton later shared that Angelou, who was a good friend of hers, wrote her poem “On the Pulse of Morning" for former President Bill Clinton for his 1993 presidential inauguration.
“Do not be wedded forever
To fear, yoked eternally
The horizon leans forward,
Offering you space to place new steps of change.”
We can dig it.
On her preteen insecurities:
“It was my first week of high school, and I was excited and nervous. At that time, I wore my hair in a ponytail or held back with a headband. When I saw the older girls with their hair in little bobs, I thought that looked so much more grown-up, so I begged my mother to take me to a real beauty parlor to get my hair cut. Our neighbor recommended a man who had a small shop behind a grocery store, and he got distracted talking to my mother and hacked off a huge chunk of my hair! I was mortified. So I tried to fix it by wearing a fake ponytail to school. And then a friend of mine accidentally pulled it off in front of everyone. Which of course was a nightmare. At the time, I felt like it might have been the worst moment of my life.”
On the advice she’d give her 11-year-old self:
“I would say that when you have a big dream or you’re trying to solve a big problem, there will always be people who tell you that you can’t. Here’s my advice: don’t listen. Keep striving for your goals, and remember that it’s good to be ambitious. There’s nothing wrong with knowing what you want and going after it. And Marley, what you’ve accomplished already is proof of that.”
On the three things she’d need with her on a deserted island:
“A phone to FaceTime with my grandkids, some chocolate to snack on, and of course, a really great book. I'd call you first for a recommendation.”
Read the interview in its entirety here.
(Photo from left: Brian Killian/Getty Images, Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
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