About Chae-Pyong Song

Associate Professor of English at Marygrove College, Detroit, MI

Snow by Yun Dong-ju

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

Photography by Jeong Bong-chae

Photography by Jeong Bong-chae

Snow by Yun Dong-ju (1917-1945)

Last night
snow fell abundantly:

on the rooftops,
on the paths, on the farms.
Perhaps it is a blanket
that keeps us from the cold.

That’s why
it falls only in the chill of the winter.

/윤동주

지난 밤에
눈이 소오복이 왔네

지붕이랑
길이랑 밭이랑
추워한다고
덮어 주는 이불인가 봐

그러기에
추운 겨울에만 나리지

yundongjuphotoYun Dong-ju (1917 – 1945) was born in Longjing, Jiandao, in present-day northeastern China. He was known for lyric poetry as well as resistance poetry against Japanese colonialism.

Standing by a Winter Field by Oh Sae-young

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Darcy Brandel

Photography by Hwang Moon-sung

Photography by Hwang Moon-sung

Standing by a Winter Field by Oh Sae-young

A person suffering from love
even once
should visit a winter field.
There is fullness
of an empty space, pleasure
of a person giving freely.
A few fallen grains
on a rice paddy after the harvest.

A person mourning separation
even once
should visit a winter field.
There is comfort
in the heaven that eternalizes
these encounters on earth.
The eyes of a pond
looking up at faraway stars.

A person afflicted with longing
even once
should visit a winter field.
There is awareness
that to watch you is to watch me,
to be alone is to be with others.
The scarecrow
watching the empty field alone.

겨울들녘에서서/오세영

사랑으로 괴로운 사람은
한 번쯤
겨울 들녘에 가 볼 일이다.
빈 공간의 충만,
아낌 없이 주는 자의 기쁨이
거기 있다.
가을 걷이가 끝난 논에
떨어진 낟알 몇 개.

이별을 슬퍼하는 사람은
한번쯤
겨울 들녘에 가볼 일이다.
지상의 만남을
하늘에서 영원케 하는 자의 안식이
거기 있다.
먼 별을 우러르는
둠벙의 눈빛.

그리움으로 아픈 사람은
한번쯤
겨울 들녘에 가볼 일이다.
너를 지킨다는 것은 곧 나를 지킨다는 것,
홀로 있음으로 오히려 더불어 있게된 자의 성찰이
거기 있다.
빈들을 쓸쓸히 지키는 논둑의 저
허수아비.

osyphotoOh Se-young (1942~ )was born in Yeongkwang, Jeollanam-do. He is both a prolific poet and critic. He has published eighteencollections of poetry. His lyrical poetry is known for its simplicity; it is often imbued with Buddhist imagination of the emptiness of self and nonattachment to materialism. After years of shuttling between academia and creative writing, he has recently retired from teaching at Seoul National University. Oh is a recipient of many prestigious awards including the Sowol Poetry Award, the Jung Ji-yong Literary Award, and the Manhae Literary Award.

The Winter Sea by Kim Nam-jo

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

Photography by Shawn Malone

Photography by Shawn Malone

The Winter Sea by Kim Nam-jo (1927- )

I went out to see the winter sea.
The unknown bird, the bird I wished to see,
had died and wasn’t there.

The bitter sea wind froze
even the truth into tears
when I thought of you.
The fire of futility
was burning above the water.

It is always
time
that teaches me.
Nodding my head, I stand in the winter sea.

Though my remaining days are few,
let me have a soul
where one prayer opens
the door to more passionate prayers.

I went out to see the winter sea.
The water of endurance was creating
pillars in the depths of the water.

겨울바다/김남조

겨울 바다에 가 보았지
미지(未知)의 새
보고 싶던 새들은 죽고 없었네

그대 생각을 했건만도
매운 해풍에
그 진실마저 눈물져 얼어 버리고
허무의 불 물이랑 위에
불붙어 있었네

나를 가르치는 건
언제나 시간
끄덕이며 끄덕이며 겨울 바다에 섰었네

남은 날은 적지만
기도를 끝낸 다음 더욱 뜨거운
기도의 문이 열리는
그런 영혼을 갖게 하소서

겨울 바다에 가 보았지
인고(忍苦)의 물이
수심(水深) 속에 기둥을 이루고 있었네

출전: “현대문학” (1967)

The Snow Day by Kim Nam-jo

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

Painted by Kang Jang-won

Painted by Kang Jang-won

The Snow Day by Kim Nam-jo (1927- )

The Winter tree
and the wind–
the wind’s long tress of hair
hangs all day long on the edge of the branches

like transparent laundry,
making the tree and the wind
become one, no longer isolated from one another.

Not alone.
Nobody is alone.
Neither am I.
In fact, even when I stood alone under the sky,
hasn’t the sky at least stood with me?

Life always stands somewhere
on the stone stairs
of grace.

Love always stands somewhere
on the gravel road
of Providence.

Soothing the complaints with words,
I will live, becoming more generous.
Knowing life is a grateful festival,
I will enjoy this life.

The tears that have ascended, pure icy flowers
around my eyes this new year,
descend again, carrying white snow.

설일(雪日)/김남조

겨울 나무와
바람
머리채 긴 바람들은 투명한 빨래처럼
진종일 가지 끝에 걸려
나무도 바람도
혼자가 아닌 게 된다.

혼자는 아니다
누구도 혼자는 아니다
나도 아니다
실상 하늘 아래 외톨이로 서 보는 날도
하늘만은 함께 있어 주지 않던가

삶은 언제나
은총(恩寵)의 돌층계의
어디쯤이다

사랑도 매양
섭리(攝理)의 자갈밭의
어디쯤이다

이적진 말로써 풀던 마음 말로써 삭이고
얼마 더 너그러워져서 이 생명을 살자
황송한 축연이라 알고
한 세상을 누리자

새해의 눈시울이
순수의 얼음꽃, 승천한 눈물들이 다시 땅 위에 떨구이는
백설을 담고 온다.

The Snow Path by Ko Un

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

Photography by Hwang Moon-sung

Photography by Hwang Moon-sung

The Snow Path by Ko Un (1933- )

Now I am gazing
at the snow path that covers up what has passed.
After wandering through the whole winter,
I am gazing at this foreign territory.
The scene of snow
falls in my heart for the first time.
The world is at the edge of meditation,
a world covered with exuberant peace
no country that I have traveled has ever seen.
I am gazing at the invisible movements of all things.
What is the sky where the snow is falling?
Listening closely, through the falling snow,
I hear the grand earth’s confession.
I can hear for the first time.
My heart is the snow path outside,
and darkness within.
After wandering though this world of winter,
I have come now to guard the great quiet,
and, in front of the piling snow,
my heart is darkness.

눈길/고은

이제 바라보노라.
지난 것이 다 덮여 있는 눈길을.
온 겨울을 떠돌고 와
여기 있는 낯선 지역을 바라보노라.
나의 마음속에 처음으로
눈 내리는 풍경.
세상은 지금 묵념의 가장자리
지나온 어느 나라에도 없었던
설레이는 평화로서 덮이노라.
바라보노라. 온갖 것의
보이지 않는 움직임을.
눈 내리는 하늘은 무엇인가.
내리는 눈 사이로
귀 귀울여 들리나니 대지의 고백.
나는 처음으로 귀를 가졌노라.
나의 마음은 밖에서는 눈길
안에서는 어둠이노라.
온 겨울의 누리를 떠돌다가
이제 와 위대한 적막을 지킴으로써
쌓이는 눈더미 앞에
나의 마음은 어둠이노라.

출전: “현대문학” (1958)

kounphotoKo Un was born in Kunsan, Jeollabuk-do in 1933. As a recipient of numerous literary awards, Ko Un is one of the most famous contemporary poets in Korea. Since his debut in Hyondae Munhak in 1958, he has since produced over 120 literary works, including novels and critical writings. In 2010 he completed Maninbo, a now 30-volume poetry collection that had been published in installments over a period of twenty three years.

Shhh by Moon In-soo

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

Illustrated by Kwon Shin-ah

Illustrated by Kwon Shin-ah

Shhh* by Moon In-soo

I have been to his father’s funeral.

He told me a story: he, who had passed his sixtieth year, held his father, beyond 90 and helped him urinate. Even though life’s important controls had left the old body, his mind was still like a lantern. Afraid that the old man might feel hopeless, he helped him, half joking and half playing the baby, saying “Father, shhh, shhh, all right, all, right, you must feel good.”

When he held his father, it was as if he entered deep into the whole body. When he held his father like that as though giving back to the body, how much might the old man have tried to shrink himself to make himself smaller and lighter? His urine thread cut off frequently, but such a long thread that the son again and again tried to tie it down to the earth pitifully, but the father with difficulty might sever it now. Shhh,

Shhh! The universe must be quiet.

*In Korean, this word refers to not only a way to make someone hush, but also is used as an onomatopoeia to help children urinate.

/문인수

그의 상가엘 다녀왔습니다.

환갑을 지난 그가 아흔이 넘은 그의 아버지를 안고 오줌을 뉜 이야기를 들었습니다. 생의 여러 요긴한 동작들이 노구를 떠났으므로, 하지만 정신은 아직 초롱 같았으므로 노인께서 참 난감해 하실까봐 “아버지, 쉬, 쉬이, 어이쿠, 어이쿠, 시원허시것다아”농하듯 어리광부리듯 그렇게 오줌을 뉘였다고 합니다.

온 몸, 온 몸으로 사무쳐 들어가듯 아, 몸 갚아드리듯 그렇게 그가 아버지를 안고 있을 때 노인은 또 얼마나 더 작게, 더 가볍게 몸 움츠리려 애썼을까요. 툭, 툭, 끊기는 오줌발, 그러나 그 길고 긴 뜨신 끈, 아들은 자꾸 안타까이 땅에 붙들어 매려 했을 것이고 아버지는 이제 힘겹게 마저 풀고 있었겠지요. 쉬,

쉬! 우주가 참 조용하였겠습니다.

mooninsoophotoMoon In-soo (1945-) was born in Sungju, Gyeongsangbuk-do. He studied Korean literature at Dongkuk University in Seoul. He made his debut when he was forty two years old. He published such poetry collections as All the Roads In the World Lead To Home (1992), The Horn (1992), The Nesting Mountain (1999), Shhh! (2006), Umbilical Cord (2008) andThe Sound of Silence (2012). His prestigious literary awards include the Kim Dal-jin Literary Award (2000), the No Jak Literary Award (2003), and the Meedang Literary Award (2007).

Dangling by Moon In-soo

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

Photography by Lee Hyun-sook

Photography by Lee Hyun-sook

Dangling by Moon In-soo

The grandmother who lives alone visits the district office. So bent, she looks like a snail.
She walks up the alley unbearably slowly, as if licking her life, hiding her hungry belly, folded in upon itself. At the end of the serpentine alleyway, she squats down alone, dangling;
she resumes walking and rests again. Below the electric pole, why, a dandelion blossom is yellow. At the bottom, the end of her memory

appears yellow.

Yellow, starved of milk. When are you going to climb over the sky’s summit, dangling?

As the kettle’s top breaks off, a birds flies away some point in time.

꼭 지/문인수

독거노인 저 할머니 동사무소 간다. 잔뜩 꼬부라져 달팽이 같다
그렇게 고픈 배 접어감추며
여생을 핥는지, 참 애터지게 느리게
골목길 걸어올라간다. 골목길 꼬불꼬불한 끝에 달랑 쪼그리고 앉아 꼭지야,
걷다가 또 쉬는데
전봇대 아래 웬 민들레 꽃 한 송이
노랗다. 바닥에 기억의 끝이

노랗다.

젖배 곯아 노랗다. 이년의 꼭지야 그 언제 하늘 꼭대기도 넘어가랴.

주전자 꼭다리 떨어져나가듯 저, 어느 한점 시간처럼 새 날아간다.

mooninsoophotoMoon In-soo (1945-) was born in Sungju, Gyeongsangbuk-do. He studied Korean literature at Dongkuk University in Seoul. He made his debut when he was forty two years old. He published such poetry collections as All the Roads In the World Lead To Home (1992), The Horn (1992), The Nesting Mountain (1999), Shhh! (2006), Umbilical Cord (2008) andThe Sound of Silence (2012). His prestigious literary awards include the Kim Dal-jin Literary Award (2000), the No Jak Literary Award (2003), and the Meedang Literary Award (2007).

The Moon’s Bare Foot by Moon In-soo

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

mooninseoul

The Moon’s Bare Foot by Moon In-soo

The Moon lingers for a long while,
and she, too, crosses the river again awkwardly
via the iron railway bridge.
Why are these shoes here?
Wearing the clouds, the Moon has been dark for a moment,
and is barefoot again.
Some woman’s feet—they stink.

달의맨발/문인수

달이 한참 뭉그적거리다가 저도 한강,
철교를 따라 어설프게 건너본다.
여기, 웬 운동화?
구름을 신고 잠깐 어두웠던 달, 다시 맨발이다.
어떤 여자의 발 고린내가 차다.

mooninsoophotoMoon In-soo (1945-) was born in Sungju, Gyeongsangbuk-do. He studied Korean literature at Dongkuk University in Seoul. He made his debut when he was forty two years old. He published such poetry collections as All the Roads In the World Lead To Home (1992), The Horn (1992), The Nesting Mountain (1999), Shhh! (2006), Umbilical Cord (2008) andThe Sound of Silence (2012). His prestigious literary awards include the Kim Dal-jin Literary Award (2000), the No Jak Literary Award (2003), and the Meedang Literary Award (2007).

A Dwelling by Moon In-soo

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

Painted by Kang Jang-won

Painted by Kang Jang-won

A Dwelling by Moon In-soo

The wind has died down.  Ah, at last,
the empty air is the only thing one can lean on.

거처/문인수

바람이 잔다. 아, 결국
기댈 데란 허공뿐이다.

출전: “그립다는 말의 긴 팔” (서정시학, 2012)

mooninsoophotoMoon In-soo (1945-) was born in Sungju, Gyeongsangbuk-do. He studied Korean literature at Dongkuk University in Seoul. He made his debut when he was forty two years old. He published such poetry collections as All the Roads In the World Lead To Home (1992), The Horn (1992), The Nesting Mountain (1999), Shhh! (2006), Umbilical Cord (2008) andThe Sound of Silence (2012). His prestigious literary awards include the Kim Dal-jin Literary Award (2000), the No Jak Literary Award (2003), and the Meedang Literary Award (2007).

October by Moon In-soo

Translated by Chae-Pyong Song and Anne Rashid

pumpkin

October by Moon In-soo

The spot I picked up the pumpkin,
the pumpkin had sat, pressing down the ground.
The center of autumn
caved in.
For awhile, I will suffer this way.

10월/문인수

호박 눌러 앉았던, 따 낸
자리.
가을의 한복판이 움푹
꺼져 있다.
한동안 저렇게 아프겠다.

출전: 시집, “동강의 높은 새” (세계사, 2000)

mooninsoophotoMoon In-soo (1945-) was born in Sungju, Gyeongsangbuk-do. He studied Korean literature at Dongkuk University in Seoul. He made his debut when he was forty two years old. He published such poetry collections as All the Roads In the World Lead To Home (1992), The Horn (1992), The Nesting Mountain (1999), Shhh! (2006), Umbilical Cord (2008) andThe Sound of Silence (2012). His prestigious literary awards include the Kim Dal-jin Literary Award (2000), the No Jak Literary Award (2003), and the Meedang Literary Award (2007).