Sunday, July 9, 2006

Does Anyone Have An Extra Copy of The Bloomsbury Review, July/August 2003?

If anyone has an extra copy of The Bloomsbury Review, July/August 2003 (Volume 23, Issue 4), I would gladly buy it from you. I had a poem called "Lines" published in it, but I never received my contributor's copy. Actually I never even knew the poem was published. Ray Gonzalez, bless him, accepted the poem, but the editors never sent me an issue---or maybe it was one of the many things that vanished during a move around that time. It was just last year that I found out the poem was published, when a friend congratulated me.

Anyway, I wrote the editors asking for a copy, but they said it's sold out. As you may know, there are only a few poems published in each issue (Joseph Legaspi has a poem in that issue as well), and I was really happy to have it in there because I'm a big Gonzalez fan. If you haven't read any of his work, I'd recommend him highly.


LINES Lee Herrick

I only saw two in Beijing—not at any restaurant,
where you lean in and jockey for position against the hordes

or just let the food arrive when it will. Not at the international
airport where the same rules apply. But in the evening

when the thirty grandmothers came out to dance in lines
their arms curling like thin flags around their bodies.

They formed a square, really, a gathering of years
stepping softly in perfect time to the music.

The other one was a true line, hundreds of tourists long,
entering Chairman Mao’s Mausoleum. It was official business

armed guards politely taking our cameras, backpacks,
bottles of water, saying you can get this when you are through

the line. We filed in one by one, walking swiftly
up to the body encased in glass, his belly rising under the flowers,

an occasional tourist from Shanghai or Denver trying
to slow down, to better capture this moment, the guards

nudging them along saying, keep this line moving—
And then there are the ones I remember from school

The dreadful kickball line, up against the wall so the strong kids
could decide who to pick, who to pick, eyeing each scrawny kid

to fill out their team, each of us looking down at the sad gravel
wishing we could burrow into it and out of this lineup—

And now there are the ones I think about most, the lonely couplet,
the boastful quatrain, the curving lineage of my father’s and mother’s

pasts, the unfinished one of my future, and mostly these new ones,
these slight mirages that appear when I look in the mirror and smile,

the stories written right there beside my eyes, almost like the thirty
grandmothers, these fables dancing among us.

First published in The Bloomsbury Review, July/August 2003, Volume 23, Issue 4.


Jessica Smith said...

hey, thanks for posting that. i like the long thin parallel lines (of text) and the lines of people passing through each other in memory, like a woven thing (a poem).

Jae Ran said...


Lee Herrick said...

thanks jessica & jae ran.

Emmy said...

Beautiful poem. I love the image of the 30 grandmothers.

I'll keep an eye out for that issue of BR.

Thanks for posting the poem and linking to recommended blog sites in your most recent post. Thank you,


Lee Herrick said...

Thank you for your visit and the nice comment(s), Emmy...