Magazine article World Literature Today

Lion Brothers

Magazine article World Literature Today

Lion Brothers

Article excerpt

Leona Sevick. Lion Brothers. WinstonSalem, North Carolina. Press 53. 2017. 63 pages.

Lion Brothers, Leona Sevick's first fulllength poetry collection, is named for the textile factory where the poet's Korean mother worked. While the collection is, in part, about the poet's working-class parents, it is also a profound exploration of domestic life and its discontents.

"I have something to tell you," a seemingly benign sentence, is the emotional whirlpool around which Lion Brothers swirls. In its first speaking, the sentence is directed to the poet's mother by her husband, the poet's father. In the second, it is directed to the poet-speaker by her own husband, and, both times, it is a prologue to the husbands' confessions to infidelity. Figuratively, the poet-speaker may be heard whispering the same sentence-telling herself and her readers some things.

A short excerpt from "Garage Door" illustrates both the tone and the unvarnished veracity of the collection. "I watch you spread the ladder's legs far enough // to support your hulking frame. And, as you balance / on your good shoes, the ones you like so much, // I almost wish you wouldn't fall."

Despite centering on formidable subjects such as racism, motherhood, and the suffering of children, the poems never stoop to melodrama. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.