"Person Crafted Out of Water" by Kim Sun-Woo

Person Crafted Out of Water



When that time of month comes near

my body exudes the scent of the sea


From inside a deep well a gyesu tree flows out

and a pair of snails that made love flows out

and curling its wings that will turn to ash a firebird flows out

the feet of all the things which flow out of me

are always imbued a little with the salty scent of the sea


The musk of mother’s body when her lap was a pillow

every night when I could smell only the soft sea brine,

why with such unquenchable thirst the acacias on the low mountain

waved their skeins of white flowers,


Kim Sun-Woo is a poet, novelist, and essayist. She has won the Hyundae Literary Award and the Cheon Sang-byeong Poetry Award. Her poems were published in the 2015 winter issue of Mānoa: A Pacific Journal of International Writing. Her book Falling Asleep under a Peach Blossom (Unter Pfirsichblüten eingeschlafen) has been translated into German.