From a Three-Cornered World
Mitsui's poems contain a family history of immigration to the Pacific Northwest from Japan and the assimilation of American culture over three generations, including the relocation of Japanese Americans during World War II. His vignettes of family life are gems of bittersweet humor and tenacious affection, revealing a deft and earthly poetic charm. Mitsui ranges over many subjects and deals with major themes in language that is spare yet lyrical, expressing historical insight in profoundly moving imagery.
"This collection is largely a personal documentary exploring the relationship between family and history that spans a cycle beginning with the migration, marriage, and internment of Mitsui's Nisei parents, and circling around with his contemplations on fulfilling the many roles in his life: son, teacher, friend, husband, grandparent. The poems depict the strength of what it is that binds us to the other people in our lives as testimony to a life lived well—that we have loved and have been loved."—Multicultural Review
"Mitsui's poems are noteworthy for an honest lyricism rooted in specific details. . . . [His] poems express the wisdom gleaned from a centuries-old culture."—The Seattle Times
"Through the use of precise details arranged in carefully crafted lines, Mitsui's work explores the internment camps of World War II, his family ties an struggles, and his lifelong involvement with poetry and teaching. . . . This is poetry that has placed experiences of significance in an order that resonates and that should withstand the test of time."—Wordscape
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