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Notes from the Divided Country
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Notes from the Divided Country

By Suji Kwock Kim
2003, 74 pages, paperback.
Descriptive Comments from Back Cover
About the Author

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The Publisher's Description
National Public Radio (NPR) interview with Suji Kwock Kim

Text and/or reading from this book -
Fugue for Eye and Vanishing Point
Montage with Neon, Bok Choi, Gasoline, Lovers & Strangers<

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Descriptive Comments from Back Cover

"This is a brilliant, unerasable book. It begins with the descent of the soul into flesh, which is also the descent into the catastrophic, tormenting history of family and nation. Kim does not turn away from this history but takes it into herself, making poems that give it indelible voice. The poems as a whole surprise not only by their ambition and ferocity but by their delicacy, their sudden reserves of stillness and contemplation. If there is justice, the future will look back on this book as a major event."
- Frank Bidart

"These eloquent poems…address the reader with an unswerving mix of music and vivid pain. These are poems of desolation and absence, political in the largest sense and private in the truest…. They mark the emergence of an exciting new voice."
- Eavan Boland

"I am deeply moved and instructed by Suji Kwock Kim's Brilliant debut collection, which moves fluently between the living and the dead, the Korean past and the Asian American present. Notes from the Divided Country is a heartfelt and blood-soaked work of flights and explorations, of personal probings and historical exposures, of suffering and responsibility, of tribute and witness, of American soul-making."
- Edward Hirsch

"Notes from a Divided Country is a beautiful book of which an entire people, we undivided Americans, can be deeply proud. Kim's brilliantly crafted, brave new poems move us into an emotional union with the seemingly far-flung past of Korea's political geography…. What voice, what witness, what glorious descendancy."
- Garrett Hongo

Notes from a Divided Country spring out of a civil war in the soul….[Its] revelation of horror is so explicit, so necessary; a facing up to history that frees the speaker…. To understand the gift of the senses is a blessing. It is a graceful, powerful trope…. There's love and sadness at the root of these poems. There is also a bridge, a language that mends."
- Yusef Komunyakaa, from his judge's citation

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Background on Suji Kwock Kim

Suji Kwock Kim's poems have appeared in The Nation, The New Republic, Paris Review, Poetry, Yale Review, Double Take, Asian-American Poetry: The Next Generation, and other journals and anthologies. The recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Fulbright Program, and winner of the Nation / "Discovery" Award, Kim divides her time between San Francisco and New York.

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Most recent revision January 11, 2004