Tag Archives: youth

Moonchild

 

he had a dirty-blond goatee
the hem of his pants were frayed
and the threads dragged

*

he said he was a football player
in high school
then giggled

*

in the dark of his small room
we sat on the floor
drinking plum tea

*

listening to King Crimson
waiting for the sun on the mountain
out in the hall people laughed

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This is how I’ll remember it:
An argument on the interstate
and coffee in Tucson.
Somebody came over to our table
and said, “See that guy, he’s very smart — but he’s given to drink.”
Thinking about luxuries
driving through the suburban landscape
saying to myself:
“The suburbs aren’t so bad — not bad at all.
I’m sick of the dinge and the fringe —
So, this is what there is.”
And my wild, fragile youth
***********************passed away
like that.

 

 

 

 

 


Paradise Lost

 

When the day came into view today
I mean I felt its soft warmth
I felt the world relent
or that’s how it felt.
I remembered that I was once young and happy.
Of course then I didn’t know I was young
because I didn’t know what old was.
And I didn’t know I was happy because
I didn’t know what the world was.
Now I just remember and call it happy.
I’m not happy, I can’t be happy anymore but
I can remember being happy.


Jealousy is my strength by Ki Hyeong-do

(translated from the Korean by geul)

 

After a long time has passed,
weakened, the book will let fall these pages
Since I erected so many factories* then
foolishly, I had that much more to record
Like a dog roaming here and there under a cloud
I loitered in mid-air, unflagging
owning nothing but sighs
In all the evening streets I left my youth standing staring blankly
Since I counted the days I’ve lived in wonderment
since no one was afraid of me
the substance of my hope was only jealousy
Therefore, first, I leave here a few scribblings
Though I’ve spent my life roving madly looking for love
not once have I loved myself

 

 

*The original poem says “factories” (in Korean, of course), but it might be more understandable if you substitute in the word “castles.”

poem in original Korean

 

 


Old Person by Ki Hyeong-do

(translated from the Korean by geul)

 

He is easily found out
like some kind of hard lump
unable to flee,
crouching in the shade of the park’s wisteria tree

*

He is sitting
permitting himself only the smallest of movements
my face, my spread shoulders, firm muscles
quietly licked
by the greedy glint in his eyes

*

I hate it, his short pants and the
mouth dribbling with spit and
his grizzled mind that’s
unable to perceive this

*

For the sole reason that I’ve never been there yet
I spit on his world
For the sole reason that he is already a place of exile,
I, protecting my world,
not one step
of his intrusion can I forgive

*

Suddenly I look at him, at the same instant he
drops his gaze to the foot of the wisteria
fumbling unceasingly with his clothes
still with mouth open
as if there was something he wanted to say, as if inside his body
something still remaining was burdensome

*

 

poem in original Korean