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  • Obituary According to (Self Portrait)1
  • Amy Lee Scott (bio)

Queries 1 through 1 of 1 queries:

Delete: 1. LEE, YUNG from 1971 to 1971;

Died: in all volumes.

I, Lee Yung-Hwa, died on a clear morning in 1971. I imagine that most everyone else on the island was still sleeping. Maybe there was mist in the air and green in the mountains. Maybe I looked out the window and saw the mist, the green, the hibiscus looping up and around the bungalow. Maybe I saw the harbor called by Captain Brown Fair Haven a hundred years before.

I died every year after that until 1980, with the exception of '72-'74. And '76. Who knows why.

I died in Honolulu first. Then Washington, D.C., and San Francisco—twice in each place, if you can believe that. I died three more times in Cook, Illinois. In between, I died in Englewood, Colorado; Staten Island, New York; Federal Way, Washington; Maywood, California. I died in Hacienda, California.

Once I died while married to Tien Hsiao. Once while married to Elliott Glazer (who, to be frank, may have been Ho Thanh, seeing that I married both of [End Page 51] them in 1980 somewhere in Texas). Did we marry in a plains city with the grass dried and sweet, wearing summer linens? Or was it by the sea, the air thick and the sweat creeping down our collars?

I died a dozen times married to no one.

I died for the second to last time in 2000, married to no one, in Cook, Illinois.

I died for the last time in Los Angeles. It was 2006, the United Nations' International Year of Deserts. I lived a long time in the desert. There was red rock there and chaparral. The smell of rust. In 2006, there was suddenly no such thing as Pluto the Planet. There was a total solar eclipse, and the March wind kept blowing.

Amy Lee Scott

Amy Lee Scott is a student in the University of Iowa's Nonfiction Writing Program. Her work was listed as a notable essay in The Best American Essays, 2009, and a recent Brevity piece will appear in Dzanc Books' Best of the Web, 2010.


1. I was trying to find some ancestry online by using Yung Hwa-Lee, my Korean name, but all I found was a list of dead people with the same name. As a Korean adoptee with no information concerning my biological family, I wondered what would happen if I borrowed these Yung Hwa-Lees' scant information in order to reflect upon the unknowns in my own life. [End Page 52]



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