Poetry as Salvation

by Luanne

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.

He writes:

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:

Four Poems and a Self-Interview, Kin Poetry Journal, 2013.

“Gardening Secrets of the Dead,” Tending the Speculative, Asian American Writers’ Workshop, 2013

“Self-Portrait” and “Kwi Ch’on,” Mascara Literary Review, 2012

“Van Gogh Writes to Gauguin” and “Focus Theory,” Pebble Lake Review, with audio, 2012

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.

 

 

Comments

  1. menomama3 says:

    Very powerful and evocative. This is stunning: “It knew about genius and the madness involved with the trees,
    the olives dancing on the branches like grenades.”

  2. beautiful poem – thanks for sharing.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: