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
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.


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)