Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Review: A Distant Center

A Distant Center A Distant Center by Ha Jin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ha Jin moved to the United States from China in 1985, and wrote these poems in English, but they do feel like they are of more than one place, or maybe sometimes no place (in a way I really liked.) Some are motivational, like some of my favorites from Mary Oliver, where the poet is speaking directly to the reader, reminding them to have space and acceptance. They might be good as part of a mindfulness practice, whether or not that was how they were intended.

My favorites:

-The Long-Distance Traveler
"Keep going: the farther you go,
the smaller you grow
in the eyes of those
who can't walk anymore...."

"...Keep in mind your talent also includes patience and endurance.
Get up, move quietly, and leave all the clamor behind."

Thanks to Copper Canyon Press for providing access to this title through Edelweiss. It comes out 24 April 2018.

"...You must learn to be content
to inhabit your own space -
news from far away
can no longer disturb you..."

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