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The River Darkens on an Autumn Night
Yi Jung



The river darkens on an autumn night
And the waves subside as if to sleep.
I drop a line into the water
But the sleepy fish won’t bite.

The empty boat and I return
Filled with our catch of moonlight.

Jung's original poem is in the public domain.
This translation by Virginia Olsen Baron and Chang Seuk Park and included in Ms. Baron's book,
Sunset in a Spider Web: Sijo Poetry of Ancient Korea (Henry Holt & Co., 1974).

No biographical information has been found about this poet. 
If you can help, we'd love to to know more about Yi Jung.

Post New Comment:
Really beautiful, did not expect the ending, superb.
Posted 10/10/2011 04:01 AM
nadia ibrashi:
Lovely. Thanks.
Posted 10/05/2011 11:36 PM
This is an example of why poetry can last and last and last. Beautiful way to start the day.
Posted 10/05/2011 10:00 AM
I like it!
Posted 10/05/2011 09:38 AM
Love it! So few words, such wonderful images!
Posted 10/05/2011 08:39 AM
Posted 10/05/2011 07:41 AM
Haunting, the word 'catch' doing a lot of work.
Posted 10/05/2011 04:24 AM

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