Lee Herrick has a poem in Perpetual Child: Dismantling the Stereotype (Adult Adoptee Anthology) called “Salvation.”
In this poem, Herrick, a Korean adoptee with two published poetry collections and poems published in numerous literary journals and magazines, borrows the language of African-American Blues music.
The blues means
finding a song
in the abandonment, one
you can sing in the middle
of the night when you
remember that your Korean name,
Lee Kwang Soo, means bright
light, something that can illuminate
or shine, like tears,
little drops of liquefied God,
glistening down your brown face.
By focusing on the sad and resilient music created from loss, the poem creates a poignancy more powerful than any storytelling.
I love the poem so much that I sought out more of Herrick’s writing–his “Blues songs.”
On his website, he shares these poems:
Because literary poetry like Herrick’s has such a small readership, I was thrilled to find his poem in the adult adoptee anthology. I hope more people will seek out more of his work. It should be read by everyone involved with adoption.