Drowning in the Floating World by Meg Eden
Publisher: Press 53 ISBN: 1950413152 Pages: 80 Publication Date: March 11th 2020 RRP: $14.95 USD Personal Rating: 5/5
Drowning in the Floating world is a heart-wrenching book filled with a series of poems that followed the aftermath of Japan’s 2011 tsunami and Fukushima plant disaster. Each poem takes a new perspective of the individuals, buildings and animals who endured the aftermath.
Stories of mothers swallowed up by the sea; siblings wondering where their other half went; toys missing their owners; buildings confused on their emptiness; animals desperately wanting to be reunited; unforgiving waters that gave new meanings to thousands of people.
The 2011 tsunami was the aftermath of a 9.0 earthquake 130 km east from Japan’s shores. The northeastern coast towns of Kamaishi, Sendai, Miyako, Ishinomaki, Kesennuma, Shiogama, Kitaibaraki and Hitachinaka were underwater the due 10 meter waves that travelled more than 10km inland. The waves decimated towns and took away the bodies of thousands of victims when it retreated. The earthquake also affected the Fukushima nuclear power plant that forced the nearby residents to flee the radiation filled zone creating an eerie ghost town
Meg Eden used her experience and her connection to Japan after living there for several years to tell the stories which those who have no voice. Just the like the debris-filled waters, Eden shows no mercy in displaying the agony through Western and Eastern poetic forms. She explores the complexity of grief of the dead and the survivors while illustrating how local and global responses to the tragedy when people were lost in their own suffering.
This book is not for the faint of heart, for its raw power will give you pain and tear stricken cheeks that will remind you how easily everything can be lost to the hand of Mother Earth. This is not an ode to disasters but a memory of events that are can be forgotten by those who did not suffer through its moments. The poems in this book create a much needed empathy for those who have never experience life-changing disasters in their lifetime.
Read if you have the heart.