Poem, Song and Lecture Night at Meson Madrid, Palisades Park, NJ


Korean American Foundation USA held a Poem, Song and Lecture year-end Party on December 6, 2019, at Meson Madrid Pavilion, Bergen Blvd, Palisades Park, NJ 07650, as part of fund raising for orphaned and handicapped children around the world . Dr. Hubert Hojae, founder of Korean American Foundation, for the past 30 years, provided a party honoring Korean War Veterans in the State of New York, and in Suriname, South America he was honored as a guest speaker for the Smith Task Force (the first dispatch of American troop by General MacArthur) Reunion that was held at Double Tree Hotel, McLean,  Va. He delivered during his speech a poem he composed in honor of all Korean War Veterans,” Dear Our Heroes”. In an English book he wrote and published” My Journey to America”, he covered many pages with his articles on the tragic Korean War, during which he lost two of his brothers and uncle, and confessed himself that how murderous communism was and how grateful America was to protect South Korea from communism, The freedom, democracy and peace that 55 million South Korean are enjoying today, are absolutely attributable to the selfless sacrifice of Korean War veterans. In honor of their sacrifices, Dr. Lee always keeps their sacrifice in the bottom of his heart. This is the reason why he has provided a thank you party for those veterans every year since the beginning the year 1989 for the past 30 years. Frequently he took many Korean War veterans to visit the battlefields in the DMZ they fought 70 years ago. Fred Schweikert, who served in Korea in the frontline and crippled during his service in the 7th Infantry US Army  Euijeongbu, near DMZ , Korea  will be revisiting Korea with Dr. Lee, when the foundation is scheduled to deliver funds for orphaned children in Yang Pyeong  in Spring. He upgraded his annual fund raising party by combining poem reciting, singing by singers, and lecture series on the topics of the current crisis  in Korea. At this special night, a saxophonist Park Sungmin from Korean Marine Corp Assoc. NJ performed a prelude song “ O, Danny Boy following a pledge of allegiance by a Korea veteran Fred Schweikert, to the Korean and American Flags in front of podium.  Criminal law Professor Sam Braverman, a Dartmouth graduate, a distinguished trial lawyer in both NJ & NY state, was invited at the request of Dr. Lee to give a lecture on Immigration and American Economic Growth, in which Sam emphasized the importance of teamwork spirit in making any mission successful in our society. His lecture on many universities Dr. Lee arranged in Korea immensely inspired young college students. In the poem reciting session a poet Heo Keum Haeng  recited the famous poem of a poet Yoon Dong Joo “Sky, Wind and Stars” together her own poem “ Unrealized Dream”, “Hyang Soo” of a poet Jung Jiyong( recited by a poet Chang Kwan Chul , a English poem by Dr. Hong Sung Yook, both member of KU 64 alumni headed by Ki Gwang il)”Under the Bridge of Mirabo in Paris” by director Lee Gangjung, “ Jindal Rae” (Azaleas) of a poet Kim Sowol by Dr. Susan Kim, “Thy Silence” of a poet Han Yong Woon by a patriot Jang Dong Gun. All these poetry works were composed during Japanese occupation in protest of their cruel imperialistic rule for 45 miserable years. Dr. Hubert Lee delivered the poem of Walt Whitman “ I sing the Body Electric”, and his comments on the poem was published in New York Times last year. This poem is significant in that Walt’s conception became a source of Nano technology today by linking the blood of body to soul. Dr. Lee explained the power of poem as enlightening younger generation by implanting  the bitter history and old ideas into their modern imagination horizon, as is practiced today by Chinese president Xijin Pyung who travels extensively around the world to inspire Chinese next generation with poems of Chinese poets Li Baek and Doo Bo that were composed during Tang Dynasty about 1350 years ago. Dr. Lee’s comments on Whitman’s poem is as follows; Remembering the poem “ I sing the Body Electric” a great poet Whitman composed, I find it very happy to enjoy the benefit of linkage of our body to soul. His creativity in linking the blood, passion, love, beauty, sex and passion of human being to the sounds of poem that are only salutary to one as Scintillation of metaphors, as a flow of electricity made our life different and better as we enjoy the benefit of Nano-technology which was conceptualized by Whitman’s poetic sentiments. When I visited his grave in the town of Camden N.J, one of the poorest villages in America, I paid higher respect to his great works, wishing him A Merry Christmas to Walt Whitman  !” In the 2nd part of the program Soh Young-Segredo MC as well as a singer sang Your Raise Me Up as well as Feliz Navidad to cheer up holiday moods. She spearheaded the Karaoke night by nominating one by one  singers who would sing 숨어우는 바람소리(Susan Suh부총재), 신사동 그사람, Casa Blanca (Margo Suh), Tom Jone’s Green, Green Grass(64동기 이종대), O, Danny Boy (Dr. Hubert lee), Guantanamera of Cuban poet Jose Marti by Gus Segredo, a Cuban immigrant. By presenting a Korean famous opera song” Keumgang San”(diamond Mountain) tenor Kim Gunsoo arrested a moments of the audience with his powerful tenor voice.Director Cho Namchun  sacrificed himself as a professional photographer for the mission of the foundation, as always .The year-end benefit music concert might have shed a light, as Dr. Lee intended, on the future pattern of Korean American year- end party that has been tarnished with introduction of organizers, drinking and eating only with a few songs entertained by an invited singer without a change in their party paradigm such as enhancing culture program and encouraging philanthropic activities. Dr. Lee’s vision to change the old paradigm of year-end music concert   into culture oriented event drew attention invoking a revolution in the traditional year end party culture. Multi-culture entertainer So young led attendants into jointly singing A Merry-Christmas song together while toasting a delicious Sangria cocktail wines that were served as a complimentary entertainment by Meson to the foundation party. A Merry Christmas to everyone!  


Edited by KAF editing staff

Dec 7, 2019