Mother’s Poem

My mother has always been a poet. Constantly scribbling, yet unable to spread her wings most of her life due to life’s obligations. I’d love to introduce you to one of her creations here. I only hope I was able to do justice in translating it.

비내리는 날의 일기 ㅡ 소귀골(牛耳洞)을 걸으며…  
– 수목원

옛목간통으로 가는 
골목길은 
멀고도 가깝다는 
표현이 맞겠습니다

돌아오는 소귀골
(牛耳洞)엔
장맛비가 억수로 
골목 어귀를 채우고,

비에 젖어 즐거운 듯
가지를 흔들어대던
굵은둥치 호두나무가 
나를 보고 반가워
가을을 기다린다고
얘기를 나누잡니다.

나의 로망은
기다리는 작은 기쁨, 
기다리고 있는 소망,
가을 기다림으로 해
여름더위를 이겨내는
작은 열매를 보는 거,

그렇게 소소해서도
마음이 충만해짐을
갖는 순간입니다..

Diary on a rainy day – Walking Soguigol street
– Soo Mok Won

So close yet so far
Is how I would describe the twisted backstreets
that leads to the old bath house

As I walk through Soguigol street,
torrential rain fills the mouth of its alley

The thick old walnut tree waves its arms
with the joy of soaking summer rain
It is delighted to see me
And urges me to chat about the coming of the fall

My inner romance is in
A tiny joy of waiting
A tiny hope of longing
And seeing the tiny seed of overcoming the summer heat
Through waiting for the fallAlthough perhaps it might be trifling,
The moment fills my heart with fullness.

Night – 밤 (Poem translated)

Strangely, I have been writing more poetry lately and although they have not much to do with Korea, as I did my best to attempt to translate my poem into Korean so I include some of them on my blog (and also Farsi translation). This one is not my best. I am not sure if this poem is even suited for Korean translation. Love and destructiveness are not topics I connect well in Korean as my knowledge of Korean is perhaps not really nuanced enough to do justice to this poem. Still, I do my best…

Night

The night calls me,
soft and seductive.
Come my love,
Come and be with me.
Forget about the day.
Forget your sorrow.
Let the darkness embrace you.
Come dream with me,
Let dreams be your reality.
Why hesitate?
All you have to do is surrender.

밤이 저를 부릅니다,
부드럽고 매혹적으로.
오세요 제사랑,
저와 함께있어요.
낮은 잊어 버리세요.
슬픔도 잊어 버리세요.
밤이 당신을 감싸 드릴수 있어요.
저와 함께 꿈을 꾸세요,
꿈이 현실로 될때까지.
왜 망설이나요?
모든것을 놓고 저에게 오시면 된답니다.

شب مرا به خود فرا می خواند
اغوا کننده و لطیف
بیا عشقم
بیا و با من باش
روز را فراموش کن
غمت را فراموش کن
بگذار تاریکی تو را در آغوش بگیرد
بیا و با من خواب ببین
بگذار رویاها واقعیت تو باشند
چرا مردد هستی؟
تنها کاری که بایدت کرد تن سپردن است

Poem in triplets…

Don’t ask why, but I started learning Persian (Farsi) just recently. I guess I wanted to learn a language that is perhaps totally not practical for once? Until now, I learned languages because I wanted to be able to speak and communicate, especially since I always had a bit of wanderlust. But with Persian I find myself learning just because I find it beautiful. I am not a polyglot. I do speak Korean and English and reasonable Spanish, but otherwise, just smattering of words in a bunch of other languages.

But there was definitely a strange consequence of learning Persian which I thought was impractical. It has awakened my poetry writing. I had abandoned writing poems long ago, reasons I had briefly explained in my other post, but now I revisit my decision. Since I’ve been writing poems in English and translating them into Persian as part of my learning exercise, I thought why not also translate them into Korean? And perhaps I would add Spanish as well in the future posts.

Love

How do I love you
When you do not exist
What do I call you
When you have no name
How do I touch you
When you are a void
When my heart breaks
And I cease to exist
Would I be with you?

사모

당신을 어떻게 사모하나요?
존재하지 않으신 분을.
당신을 어떻게 부르나요?
이름이 없으신 분을.
당신을 어떻게 촉감 하나요?
공백만 보일 뿐인데.
마음이 너무 아파 더이상
존재하지 않을때
그때 당신과 함께 있을수 있을까요?

عشق

چگونه تو را دوست بدارم
هنگامی که وجود نداری
تو را چه بنامم
هنگامی که نامی نداری
چگونه تو را لمس کنم
هنگامی که وجود غایبی
وقتی دلم می شکند
و دیگر وجود ندارم
آیا هرگز با تو خواهم بود؟

Simple poetry

As I was writing a post about Korean calligraphy, a Korean poem came to my mind. My first calligraphy presentation had been a short and simple Korean poetry. That is to say, there really is nothing simple about Korean poetry even in its simplest form. To this day, I remember every line as the image the poem evoked was truly beautiful.

비 갠 여름 아침
– 김광섭

비가 갠 날
맑은 하늘이 못 속에 내려와서
여름 아침을 이루었으니
녹음이 종이가 되어
금붕어가 시를 쓴다.

Below is my best attempt at translating the poem into English. It is almost impossible to translate Korean poem as there are nuances and expressions that do not exist in English.

Clear summer morning after the rain
– Gim Guang Seop

Clear day after the rain,
translucent sky descends
and settles into the pond
painting a perfect summer morning.
The melding becomes a paper
where fish compose poetry.