PoetryWorld Literature

Broken Dream of Dragon – A Bouquet of Poems from Korea, the Land of Morning Calm

Kang, Byeong-Cheol, an eminent award-wining poet and writer hailing from Jeju Island of Republic of Korea, shares his two poems

Kang Byeong-Cheol

Kang Byeong-Cheol- Korea1Kang Byeong-Cheol is a Korean author, poet, translator, and Doctor of Philosophy in Political Science. He was born in Jeju City, South Korea in 1964. He began writing in 1993 and published his first short story, “Song of Shuba,” at the age of twenty-nine.

In 2005, he published a collection of short stories. He has won four literature awards and has published more than eight books. He was a member of The Writers in Prison Committee (WiPC) of PEN International from 2009 to 2014.

He also served as an editorial writer for NewJejuIlbo, a newspaper in Jeju City, Korea. Currently, he is a Research Executive at The Korean Institute for Peace and Cooperation.

Broken Dream of Dragon

On the Jeju coast where dreams melt away, stands the *Yongduam.

The shape of the dragon, eroded by the waves, is filled with sorrow.

Though not grand, its appearance exudes pride,

A legendary rock that stands up to the sky.


According to the legend, the dragon was in search of jewel-like jades,

But was shot down by a divine arrow and plunged into the sea.

In an instant, its head froze while staring up at the sky,

A world of dreams filled with endless disappointment.


However, those who come to Yongduam encounter reality rather than dreams.

One can witness the hard work of the female divers in the sea

And enjoy the cafes, bars, and restaurants that fill the area.


Travelers who come to find Yongduam

Can experience Jeju’s history and scenery,

Where legends and reality come together,

And depart with the dreams of the sad dragon in their hearts.


부서진 용의

꿈이 녹아내린 제주 해안에 용두암이 있지

파도에 녹아든 용의 모습엔 슬픔이 가득하고

웅장하지는 않아도 모습은 자랑스러움을 드러내며

하늘을 향해 대적하는 전설의 용두암


전설에서, 보석 같은 비취를 노리던

산신의 화살에 맞아 바다로 추락했다지

그의 머리는 한순간 얼어붙어 하늘을 향해 쳐다보고

끝없는 실망으로 가득 꿈의 세계


하지만, 용두암을 찾는 이들은 꿈보다 현실을 만난다

해녀들이 바다에서 수고하는 모습을 구경할 있으며

카페, 바, 식당도 가득한 이곳에서 즐길 있어


용두암을 찾는 여행객들은

전설과 현실이 어우러지는 이곳에서

제주의 역사와 풍경을 함께 느끼며

가슴속에 슬픈 용의 꿈을 담아 떠날


African bird Shoebill – Pinterest Image

Endurance of the Shoebill

In the wetlands of Uganda, a bird stands tall,

Unending tranquility, waiting for food

Its massive bill shaped like a shoe, ready to haul.

With patience and poise, it stands in the water,

Waiting for prey to come, it doesn’t falter.


Its eyes are sharp, its focus intense,

The shoebill picks food with skill and sense.

With lightning speed, it strikes at its prey,

Its powerful beak leaving no delay.


Through thick and thin, the shoebill endures,

Through harsh climates, it steadfastly ensures,

Its survival and place in this world,

Its determination, never give up.


From dawn to dusk, it forages on,

Until the day is done and night has drawn.

The *shoebill is a creature of strength and might,

A symbol of endurance, a wondrous sight.


슈빌의 인내와 끈기

우간다 늪지대, 그곳에 새가 있네

신발 같은 부리를 가진, 새가

차분하게 물속에서 기다리네

먹이를 기다리며,

끝이 보이지 않는 위에 고요


날카로운 눈, 집중하는 시선,

먹이를 고르는 새는 대단하지

빠르게 부리로 내리치며,

주저없이 먹이를 잡는 강한 부리의


변함없이 견뎌내는

극한의 환경을 이겨낸 새,

세상에서의 생존과 존재감,

절대 지지 않겠다는 각오


새벽부터 저녁까지 사냥하고,

낮이 가고 밤이 깊어질 때까지,

새는 끊임없이 먹잇감을 찾지.

새는 인내와 끈기의 생명체,

환상적인 모습, 그대로 인내의 상징.


*The Dragon Head or also called Yongduam Rock of Jeju Island. This rock was created over thousands of years through waves and winds.

*Shoebill, an African bird

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