I can't say I think much of Poet Laureates nor much of this one especially. She was unknown to me before I read the news, but in my hasty, unfair opinion she seems to exemplify much of what's wrong with contemporary Anglophone poetry. Although it looks like she's a mite entertaining:
When Ishle Yi Park was installed as the third poet laureate of Queens last week, she did not simply thank the judges and recite a poem or two. She closed her eyes, spread her arms rapturously toward the audience gathered before her and began belting out a Korean pop song from the 1970's.
Before you, life was unbearable –
a flat screen and ping pong ball.
But oh, you sleek grey box,
you already wrapped present!
We sat in front of you, awed
as if you were the first red sunrise.
We burned a horseshoe
of permanent round circles into the rug
with our asses - a communion
of Afghani, Puerto Rican, Korean kids
trying to unpeel the secrets of a mustached
plumber who swallowed mushrooms,
zapped dumb-eyed turtles, warped
to other zones through green maintenance pipes.
We slept to your lullabies, the digitized
soundtrack of our childhood.
Outside, a world of mothers chastising
in accents thick as static. Blocks of white boys
bored and violent, ready to snap gum,
spit, snap us in half with splintered
Louisville Sluggers. Inside – Zelda
and goblins and magic wing-ed fairies.
Enemies you could throw a pot at,
stab twice, and they’d implode and disappear.
10 years later, we’re split
and scattered, half college drop-outs,
Soju drunk, stumbling,
and I recall how we once fought
to keep alive, counting our hearts,
freezing time to gulp Coke, taking turns
to save each other, anything, anything!
To beat them at their game.
Back then, we never gave up,
never walked away –
if the light wouldn’t bling on,
we’d check the plug, blow into the cartridge,
clean out the dust, bang that sucker on any flat surface –
give a small push, close the door, and pray.