As the grant year draws to a close, it’s hard to believe that those first days that seem like yesterday were actually 12 months ago. We have encountered varying challenges, made choices and changes that have come to define our year, and had rewarding experiences that made it all worth it. Here we stand on the other side of a year, more confident in our abilities as teachers and people. Jess McKay and Pel Doski both write of what they’ve learned and gained from students in their poems “Dust” and “Jewels”, respectively.
Somehow we have transitioned from the days of uncertainty to a new perhaps equally daunting stage: saying goodbye. These goodbyes make it clear that the memories we made in Korea will stay with us long after we leave, as Robert Cavaluzzi alludes to in his two poems “Chewing” and “Bamboo”. We are also proud to include the work of a former grantee and Editor-in-Chief of Infusion, Paddy Shea. Through his piece titled “Oman Won”, Paddy shows us the power that people have on our lives and the long-lasting impact of family—however we come to define it.
This issue offers us a space to reflect on our year, from the feelings of sadness that may overcome us as Pel Doski touches upon in another poem titled “S.A.D.” to the moments of joy that radiate from the love we create with others as seen through Mailé Nguyễn’s “Spring Rolls”. We hope this issue creates an opportunity for you to honor the relationships that have come to define your time here in Korea.
It has been a true honor serving as the Editor-in-Chief of this magazine, and I have this amazing staff to thank for its success. Their diligence and consistent efforts are what made this issue possible, including Open Window’s workshop that guided talented high school students through selecting and editing the student pieces presented in this issue. I am also grateful for KAEC Executive Director Jai Ok Shim and Executive Assistant Heidi Little’s steady support in our efforts. Lastly, I would like to thank this year’s cohort. Wherever you may be off to next, please go with the knowledge that the people you have befriended here and the experiences you have had will carry you through your next adventures.
I hope you all enjoy Volume 12, Issue 2 of Infusion.