A Distant Center by Ha Jin

A Distant Center

In the bold tradition of the “Misty Poets,” Ha Jin confronts China’s fraught political history while paying tribute to its rich culture and landscape. The poems of A Distant Center speak in a voice that is steady and direct, balancing contemplative longing with sober warnings from a writer who has confronted the traumas of censorship and state violence. With unadorned language and epigrammatic wit, Jin conjures scenes that encompass the per...

Details A Distant Center

TitleA Distant Center
Release DateApr 24th, 2018
PublisherCopper Canyon Press
GenrePoetry, Asian Literature, Chinese Literature, Cultural, China

Reviews A Distant Center

  • Jenny (Reading Envy)
    Ha Jin moved to the United States from China in 1985, and wrote these poems in English, but they do feel like they are of more than one place, or maybe sometimes no place (in a way I really liked.) Some are motivational, like some of my favorites from Mary Oliver, where the poet is speaking directly to the reader, reminding them to have space and acceptance. They might be good as part of a mindfulness practice, whether or not that was how they we...
  • J.D. Dehart
    Ha Jin offers us poems of travel, place, and memory in A Distant Center. The book is divided into meditations on travelers, time, home, and far away places. Poignantly, we are left with what Jin calls "a quiet center."The collection begins with words of advice in "You Must Not Run in Place," complete with don'ts and betters. In "The Long-Distance Traveler," Jin describes the plight of the traveler. Daily life takes center stage in "An Ideal Life,...
  • Sujin Stone
    3.5 Stars