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IRONY AND SYMBOLISM The collision of two worlds and cultures coming together creates turmoil and confusion for many With an autobiographical nature that is the feeling a reader gets when encountering the poems Persimmons by Li-Young Lee and I Go Back to May 1937 by Sharon Olds Persimmons is a story of two cultures coming together in the life of one person Lee came from a Chinese heritage and grew up in Indonesia and later the United States Li-Young LeeAcademy of American Poets Initially Li-Young Lee was unfamiliar with the English language The English language is said to be the hardest language to learn and yet he conquered it and has taught in many universities and colleges since he came to the United States Li-Young LeeAcademy of American Poets Sharon Olds was born in San Francisco and now resides in New York City Sharon OldsAcademy of American Poets Olds was born and lived in the United States inheriting the culture naturally On the other hand Lee had to learn the hard way about American society along with the difficulties of the English language The authors of these two poems felt out-of-place and at odds with their surroundings during their childhoods In the poem Persimmons the author explains how he was from a foreign country and did not know the English terms for certain things The author could tell you exactly what a persimmon was how to care for it how to tell when it is ripe the proper way to eat it and what not to do with one and yet he did not know the correct English term for the fruit The author of the poem I Go Back to May 1937 describes feeling out of place as she looked upon her parents just as they were graduating college and were to soon be married to one another line 10 In this poem Sharon Olds felt that the two adults should not
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