Featured Poem

Five poems by Yi Sang

Poem No. 1

13 children speed toward the way.
(For the road a blocked alley is apt.)

The 1st child says it is scary.
The 2nd child says it is scary.
The 3rd child says it is scary.
The 4th child says it is scary.
The 5th child says it is scary.
The 6th child says it is scary.
The 7th child says it is scary.
The 8th child says it is scary.
The 9th child says it is scary.
The 10th child says it is scary.

The 11th child says it is scary.
 The 12th child says it is scary.
The 13th child says it is scary.

Among 13 children there are scary children and
scared children and they are all they are. (It is
better that there is no other excuse.)

Of those it is fine to say that 1 child is scary.
Of those it is fine to say that 2 children are scary.
Of those it is fine to say that 2 children are scared.
Of those it is fine to say that 1 child is scared.

(For the road an opened one is apt.)
It does not matter if 13 children do not speed toward the way.

Poem No. 2

When my father is dozing by me I become my father and I become
my father’s father and even then my father is my father like my
father so why do I keep becoming my father’s father’s father’s...father
why must I jump over my father and why at last must I be acting
out myself and my father and my father’s father’s and my father’s
father’s father’s roles all at the same time staying alive

Poem No. 3

The one who fights is thus the one who hasn’t fought and the one
who fights has also been the one who doesn’t fight therefore if the
one who fights wants to see a fight then the one who hasn’t fought
seeing a fight or the one who doesn’t fight seeing a fight or the one
who hasn’t fought seeing no fight or the one who doesn’t fight seeing
no fight matters not

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About the translation:
» Read translator's notes
Poet:
YI SANG
Translator:
JACK SAEBYOK JUNG
Original language:
Korean
Issue:
2016 Number 3 - The Blue Vein

About the author

Original poet

YI SANG

YI SANG (1910–1937) was originally an architect, but after he was diagnosed with tuberculosis at age 22, he quit his job and o...

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Translator

JACK SAEBYOK JUNG

JACK SAEBYOK JUNG is a student and translator of Korean poetry. He graduated with B.A. in English from Harvard University and...

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