Linda Watanabe McFerrin reads her poem “Sakura no Sono”
Rare is the writer that I know who has created her own genre… Linda writes with such verisimilitude that you’ll never have to leave home again. Perry Garfinkel
Having grown up in Japan, Linda Watanabe McFerrin’s poetry can often seem kindred to that of the great annalists of the cherry blossom. She is calm, observant, nature-focused, a perfecter of the line, with a tight guard on syllable count and an ear for economy. The brilliance of her visceral calm and her sense, as a travel writer, of the construction of place, come through ten-fold in her poem “Sakura no Sono,” which is based upon a lived experience by her mother in WWII-era Japan. But this is no subtle-shifting time, no moonlit pond, though the diction might fit a haiku if the syntax were rearranged. If it were so, it might be that the burning cherry blossoms were metaphor for spring-time verdancy, that the war planes were thunder claps invoking the summer muses, that her mother coming into adulthood was signaled by running through gardens exploding with new life.
Hear Linda read “Sakura no Sono”