By Mai Der Vang
The 2016 winner of the Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of yank Poets, chosen via Carolyn Forché
When I make the crossing, you need to now not be taken irrespective of what
the present provides. once we achieve the camp,
there could be millions like us.
If I make it onto the aircraft, you want to persist with me to the roads
and ready pastures of America.
We won't journey the water this present day at the shoulders of buffalo
as we used to a long time in the past, nor do we forage
for the sweetest mangoes.
I am refugee. you're too. Cry, yet don't weep.
Afterland is a strong, crucial number of poetry that recounts with devastating aspect the Hmong exodus from Laos and the destiny of hundreds of thousands of refugees looking asylum. Mai Der Vang is telling the tale of her circle of relatives, and by means of doing so, she additionally presents an important historical past of the Hmong culture’s ongoing resilience in exile. lots of those poems are written within the voices of these fleeing insufferable violence after U.S. forces recruited Hmong combatants in Laos in the key warfare opposed to communism, in basic terms to desert them after that conflict went awry. That heritage is little identified or understood, however the 3 hundred thousand Hmong now residing within the usa reside evidence of its aftermath. With poems of remarkable strength and beauty, Afterland holds an unique position in American poetry and lands with a feeling of humanity stored, of shock, of a deep culture damaged by way of struggle and ocean yet nonetheless intact, remembered, and lived.
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Additional info for Afterland: Poems
Afterland: Poems by Mai Der Vang