[A couple weekends back I was in Niagara Falls for the 54th annual Northeast Modern Language Association Convention. Longtime readers will know well how much I love NeMLA, the organization and the convention alike, and this year was no exception. So as usual, here are a handful of reflections on a great NeMLA convention!]
written many times in this space, my favorite thing about NeMLA is the people,
not only the people I’ve gotten to work with on the Board (on which see the
hyperlinked post above), but also all those with whom I’ve connected in my 15+
years of attending the conference. In many cases those folks have become not
just recurring presences in my life but true friends, and I would certainly say
that of Toshiaki Komura.
I had a small part in helping Toshiaki publish his award-winning book Lost
Loss in American Elegiac Poetry, and I always look forward to the
opportunity to learn more from his scholarship and voice. His NeMLA
presentation was no exception, as he traced three generations of Japanese
American poetic responses to WWII internment/incarceration, linking them in the
process to Dickinson & Whitman and the broader legacies of American lyric
& pastoral poetry. I never fail to come away from NeMLA with a long list of
new authors and works to read, and I can’t imagine a more inspiring effect!
PS. If you
were at NeMLA, I’d love to hear your reflections too!