Translator of Poetry – Chaepyong Song

If you haven’t been following the great translations of poetry in Gwangju News, you should check them out. Monthly he and a collaborator show case at least two poems. It’s a wonderful way to understand the Korean psyche by reading poetry – translated for you.

Here is a poem he shared on Facebook yesterday. I thought with the hot weather of summer that this would be like an ice cream treat!


“Dwelling in Winter” (동안거)
by Oh Se-young
Tranalated by Chaepyong Song and Darcy Brandel

By the back wall of Mukum temple,
in a sunny spot,
tens of pots, large and small
in clusters
warm themselves up for the winter season
standing neatly on the pot terrace.
Soy sauce brimming in the sauce pot
bean paste filling up the paste pot
sitting out their fermentation
turning the frozen fall into a gong
turning the cutting wind into a chant
the ceaseless meditation
silently pursuing even in the bitter cold

 冬安居 동안거 / 오세영

 무금선원(無今禪院) 뒷담
양지 바른 곳
크고 작은 항아리들 수십 개가
장독대에 정좌하여겨울 한철을
빛바래기가 한 창이다.
간장독엔 간장이 출렁
된장독엔 된장이 가득
그 발효의 날을 기다려
빙폭(氷瀑)을 목탁 삼아
칼바람 염불 삼아
강추위에도 묵묵히 정진하는 그
부단한 참선수행(參禪修行)



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