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Rhapsody in Plain Yellowby Marilyn Chin
Synopses & Reviews
Marilyn Chin, with her multilayered, multidimensional, intercultural singing, elegizes the loss of her mother and maternal grandmother and tries to unravel the complexities of her family's past. She tells of the trials of immigration, of exile, of thwarted interracial love, and of social injustice. Some poems recall the Confucian "Book of Songs," while others echo the African American blues tradition and Western railroad ballads. The title poem references the Han Dynasty rhapsody but is also a wild, associative tour de force. Political allegories sing out with personal revelations. Personal revelations open up to a universal cry for compassion and healing. These songs emerge as a powerful and elegant collection: sophisticated yet moving, hard-hitting yet refined.
A fusion of East and West, high culture and popular culture, ancient Chinese history and the American present.
A fusion of east and west, high culture, popular culture, and ancient Chinese history mark this distinguished collection. In traditional narratives and playful song, Marilyn Chin elegizes the loss of her mother and grandmother and unravels the complexities of her family's past. She sings out the trials of immigration, exile, thwarted interracial love, and social injustice— personal revelations leading to a universal cry for compassion and healing.
About the Author
Marilyn Chin was born in Hong Kong. She is an award-winning poet and the author of Rhapsody in Plain Yellow and Revenge of the Mooncake Vixen. Her writing has appeared in The Norton Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Poetry. She lives in La Mesa, California.
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