Sentinel Poetry (Online) #56 ISSN 1479-425X

THE INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF POETRY & GRAPHICS...since December 2002

Editor-in-Chief: Amatoritsero Ede

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Poetry

 

HYON-JONG CHONG

 

THE TOAD

 

A summer day near a pine tree on Chukryong Mountain

a brown toad is squatting on a mossy rock.

I havenít seen that species of toad for such a long time. 

If I look at it whether it is at peace

or hiding, it still doesnít blink.

One of Godís creatures, its lower back is as

deep and thick as nature: the smell of soil

and the whisper of valley water

are on its soil-brown lower back.

I can clearly see every kind of insect, blades of grass, the sky

and the infinitude of celestial bodies

in the deep color of its lower back.

 

Today Iíve been revived

on that toadís back. 

 

 

A  GOD

 

Elzeard Bouffier, a tree planter,

a man-god created by a French writer

who lives in the deserted highlands of the Alps

silently plants trees to hold water,

talks to the birds,

creates life in the earth,

fills it with lives,

an illiterate country man

unaware of any other world.

Above all he doesnít say a word, 

speaking through the trees he plants,

speaking only through the flowing water,

speaking only through the songs of birds

and blooming flowers.

A god

in human form,

a god.

 

 

'The Toad' and 'A God' translated from Korean into English

by Daniel Godston

 

Daniel Godston

Translator of Hyon-Jong Chong's poems.

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