Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Han Dong

What I Said to Myself


1. at this moment 
at this moment, I am mostly writing down 
anything that comes into my mind 
nothing’s happening 
and so the twilight is an event 
and there’s me 
they swallow each other up 
until one bloats 
and the other shrinks to nearly nothing 

2. turn for the worse
“Imagine an empty interior world.” 
the outside of me is a void 
but the inside is jampacked, a compact mass 
one should take a turn for the worse 
and observe the real outside: rivers and mountains, 
a plant or a tree 
while on the inside: mind open as a valley 

3. in the future 
in the future, things will happen 
in a mood of expectation 
of anticipation 
when there is neither expectation nor anticipation 
things will happen just the same 
so that to feel an undaunted terror 
as you’re hit by a train at a crossing 
seems unnecessary

WHAT I SAID TO MYSELF

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What I Said to Myself


1. at this moment 
at this moment, I am mostly writing down 
anything that comes into my mind 
nothing’s happening 
and so the twilight is an event 
and there’s me 
they swallow each other up 
until one bloats 
and the other shrinks to nearly nothing 

2. turn for the worse
“Imagine an empty interior world.” 
the outside of me is a void 
but the inside is jampacked, a compact mass 
one should take a turn for the worse 
and observe the real outside: rivers and mountains, 
a plant or a tree 
while on the inside: mind open as a valley 

3. in the future 
in the future, things will happen 
in a mood of expectation 
of anticipation 
when there is neither expectation nor anticipation 
things will happen just the same 
so that to feel an undaunted terror 
as you’re hit by a train at a crossing 
seems unnecessary

What I Said to Myself


1. at this moment 
at this moment, I am mostly writing down 
anything that comes into my mind 
nothing’s happening 
and so the twilight is an event 
and there’s me 
they swallow each other up 
until one bloats 
and the other shrinks to nearly nothing 

2. turn for the worse
“Imagine an empty interior world.” 
the outside of me is a void 
but the inside is jampacked, a compact mass 
one should take a turn for the worse 
and observe the real outside: rivers and mountains, 
a plant or a tree 
while on the inside: mind open as a valley 

3. in the future 
in the future, things will happen 
in a mood of expectation 
of anticipation 
when there is neither expectation nor anticipation 
things will happen just the same 
so that to feel an undaunted terror 
as you’re hit by a train at a crossing 
seems unnecessary
Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Hendrik Muller fonds
Lira fonds
J.E. Jurriaanse
Literature Translation Institute of Korea
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