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Starry Night – Poetry from Korea

Starry Night – Poetry from Korea

As if silence suddenly stands up and slaps another silence,

A breakup comes barefoot like that, a breakup like that.

Kang, Hyeonguk, a poet from Korea, the Land of Morning Calm, shares his poems

Kang Hyeonguk- Korea PoetPoet Mr. Kang, Hyeonguk was born in Sangju, Gyeongbuk, in 1949. He debuted as a poet from a monthly literature Magazine in 1976. He earned a doctorate in literature from Kyungpook National University Graduate School in 1988. He has written poetry collections such as ‘Spring is gone and spring is gone’, ‘Ear of Despair’, ‘The Tow Truck is Far’, ‘South of Calm’, ‘The Moon Takes the Persimmon Tree at 2 AM’, ‘Sentences Written by Sunset’, ‘Beyond Gubyeong Mountain’, ‘Longing for Flowers to Bloom’ and ‘The Desert Fox I Met’. The poetry theory collections ‘Understanding Poetry’ and ‘How I regret the wages of my hands and feet’. He also has prose collections such as ‘South of Silence’ and ‘Old Promises’. He served as a professor and president of Daegu National University of Education from 1983 to 2007. From 1992 to 2024, he served as the publisher and editor of the quarterly literary magazine Siwabansi, specializing in poetry. From 2011 to 2024, he also served as the chairman of the board of directors of the Green Culture Content Development Institute, a non-profit organization.

images (2)Starry Night

As if silence suddenly stands up and slaps another silence,

A breakup comes barefoot like that, a breakup like that.

Cut off the ears of the most beautiful words,

One-eyed loneliness seems to pull a trigger on the left side of its chest.

Crows fly over the wheat fields, rising in the dark cypress, there.

Is there anyone? No one.


별이 빛나는

고요가 벌떡 일어나 고요의 따귀를 때리듯

이별은 그렇게 맨발로 오고, 이별은 그렇게

가장 아름다운 낱말들의 귀를 자르고

외눈박이 외로움이 외눈박이 외로움의 왼쪽 가슴에 방아쇠를 당길 당길

까마귀 나는 밀밭 너머 솟구치는 캄캄한 사이프러스, 거기

아무도 없소? 아무



Big trouble, spring has come

The road to Mt. Biseul is trembling.

Beneath the writhing, crawling rice field embankment

Big trouble, spring has come. Earthworms and slugs are wriggling.

There’s something amazing that can’t be stopped

Look at the wriggling flowers

Look at the crackling woodpecker

Spring has come, big trouble!

Even my poor love is squirming.



큰일났다, 봄이 왔다

비슬산 가는 길이 꿈틀거린다

꿈틀꿈틀 기어가는 논둑 밑에서

큰일났다, 봄이 왔다 지렁이 굼벵이가 꿈틀거린다

정지할 없는 어떤 기막힘이 있어

쓰는 풀꽃

伐木丁丁* 딱따구리

봄이 왔다, 큰일났다

가난한 사랑도 꿈틀거린다


unnamedPlaying with Shadows

Chased by Lacan’s superego, I was following my dead sister who was floating away when a phone call from Mr. Shin Sang-jo woke me from my nap. He was curious whether “Today, Arriving Yesterday,” which ends as follows, was, okay? At dawn, a dead person visited S in a dream. “How have you been?” ‘I’m not sad, but tears keep falling.’ However, S didn’t say anything. The dead person walked away, stepping on the dream like a wet grass field. When I changed S to K, my dead sister, with a face like a prickly haystack, came into my nap. The white wild roses of yesterday, arriving today, burned my heart as the superego of my life, but “How are you doing?” I was too sorrowful even to cry.


그림자와 놀다

라깡의 초자아에 쫓겨, 둥둥 떠가는 죽은 누이를 뒤쫓아 가는데 신상조 선생 전화벨이 낮잠을 깨웠다. 아래와 같이 끝을 맺고 있는 어제 도착한 오늘」이 괜찮은지? 궁금해 했다. 새벽에 S꿈속에 죽은 사람이 찾아왔다. “지내지?” ‘서럽지도 않은데 자꾸 눈물이 나.’ 그러나 S아무 말도 하지 않았다. 젖은 풀밭 같은 꿈을 밟고 죽은 사람이 돌아갔다. S를 K바꾸자 까칠한 건초더미 같은 얼굴을 하고 죽은 누이가 낮잠 속을 찾아왔다. 오늘 도착한 어제의 하얀 찔레꽃이 초자아여서 애간장은 타는데 “어떻게 지내니?” 너무 서러워서 눈물도 나지 않았다.


Read: Twenty-year-old language – Poetry from Korea





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