Questions about Past Transgressions
I was powerfully effected by a documentary I saw about the Nagasaki and Hiroshima bombings. In light of the current political unrest we are facing as a nation it seems important to me to recall the actions of the past. It may seem strange to focus on a past event when there is so much currently going on worth exploring, but I believe time and distance gives a deeper perspective to this event. After thorough research I decided that text should create a contrast with the imagery. Japanese poems serve as a counterpoint to the images. All of these poems were written long before any interaction between America
and Japan (with the exception of my poem at the end), but put in context with these images of war they gain an added depth.
Something important in this work is the idea of perspective and entitlement/access. As a second generation American with immigrant parents (neither from Japan) what access do I have to speak about something like this? Considering both of my grandfathers are American military - though not serving in WWI I, is my perspective even valid (keeping in mind I may be descended from the aggressors of this tragedy)? I believe no culture can claim exclusive access to something of this importance. My research has raised more questions than answers and this book is a way of sympathizing with the victims and finding my place in relation to the events of the past.