Monday, July 4, 2011

Urban poetry

Seoul Metro has poetry printed on most of the safety doors on the platforms. Some poems are good, some are puzzling, some are thought provoking. This one spoke to me that day. I wish I could translate it to exactly convey the feeling, but poetry really doesn't translate well unless in the hands of a brilliant writer.

"Empty Thoughts" by Jung Wijin
Upon the swift steed called time
I furiously ran

sometimes hastening to go faster
with whipping of my hand

Oh no
have I sped too much
before my eyes appears the divided path.


Xweing said...

I love the idea of poetry in Korean subway stations... js changes the perception and stuff that people can actually do with their waiting time.

As a beginner in learning your language, I find the poetry there a great help as I use to practice my reading while waiting for the train. And now am actually trying to understand some of it.

seoulsuzy said...

Xeing - Learning a foreign language through poetry is difficult, I think it's great you're reading it while waiting for the trains, instead of all the advertisements. Hope your Korean studies go well. 화이팅~!

Patricia said...

Hello! I really like the poem. In the Philippines, we have the 'Tulaan sa Tren' or Poems on Trains and 'Berso sa Metro' or Verses in the Metro. Every station has a different poem and my favorite one is written in Filipino, but it goes like this:
"....and If I die without knowing You, I didn't die, because I have not lived." Albeit the cliche, the poem holds some truth.

seoulsuzy said...

Patricia - I think it's great that there is still poetry in this world, and that it's being exposed in public places. Would love to see the ones in the Philippines one day. ^_^