Thursday, April 26, 2012

Peach Blossoms and Poems in Your Pocket

It's National Poem in Your Pocket Day!
—Photo by Sandy Thomas, Sacramento

—Kim Ku, 1488-1534

I spy the three-colored peach blossom
As it floats down the mountain stream.
A free spirit,
I jump in, fully clothed.
I scoop those flowers in my arms
And leap up and down in the water.

(trans. from the Korean by Kevin O'Rourke)


—Anonymous, 16th Century

It is the third watch. The girl
     in the bridal bedroom is so gentle,
     so beautiful, I look and look again;
     I can't believe my eyes.
Sixteen years old, peach blossom complexion,
     golden hairpin, white ramie skirt,
     bright eyes agleam in playful glance,
     lips half-parted in a smile.
     My love! My own true love!
Need I say ought
     of the silver in her voice
     and the wonder of her under the quilt.

(trans. from the Korean by Kevin O'Rourke)


—Anonymous, 16th Century

Love, why don't you come!
     Why don't you come!
On the way did someone build
     a castle of iron,
     erect a wall within the castle,
     build a house within the wall,
     place a rice-chest within the house,
     put a box within the rice-chest,
     tie you up within the box,
     make the box fast with a pair of
     dragon-turtle locks?
     Why don't you come?
With thirty days in the month,
     surely you could save one day for me?

(trans. from the Korean by Kevin O'Rourke)


—Anonymous, 16th Century

Six crock bowls the bride smashed
In a fit of temper on her wedding night.
Are you going to replace them, mother-in-law asked?
The bride replied: Your son has smashed beyond repair
The vessel I brought from home.
Weighed one against the other,
The balance would seem quite fair.

(trans. from the Korean by Kevin O'Rourke)


—Anonymous, 16th Century

Wind last night blew down
A gardenful of peach blossoms.
A boy with a broom 
Is starting to sweep them up.

Fallen flowers are flowers still;
Don't brush them away.

(trans. from the Korean by Virgina Olsen Baron and Chung Seuk Park)


Poems-For-All at The Book Collector in Sacramento
—Photo by Sandy Thomas

Sandy Thomas sends us photos to remind us that it's National Poem in Your Pocket Day; for more about that, go to or see for Trina Drotar's article in Sacramento Press.

Actually, there will be a lot going on today! Poetry With Legs features WTF's co-editor Rachel Leibrock along with frequent contributor Sage Alejandra; there will be film, cake and champagne to be had tonight to benefit Sacramento's French Film Festival coming in June (; or if you're more adventurous, you could head up to Minden, NV for the Genoa Cowboy Poetry and Music Festival this weekend. Info on all this can be seen on the blue board to the right.

And last night Andy Jones wrote to say that he and Sacramento Poet Laureate Bob Stanley will be reading on the Wyatt Deck of the Davis Arboretum at UCD today at noon. Hosts: Rebecca Moos and UC Davis Arboretum.


Today's LittleNip: 

—Anonymous, 19th Century

it's quiet in the house so quiet
outside the snowstorm wails
the dogs curl up noses under their tails
my little son sleeps on his back
his mouth open
his belly rises and falls
is it strange if I cry for joy

(trans. from the Inuit by Stephen Berg)



Jeanne Wagner reads at the Sac. Poetry Center
Monday night, April 23
—Photo by Michelle Kunert, Sacramento
[Correction: yesterday's post mistakenly stated
that SPC's Fiction Night took place April 23, 
but it was actually held on April 16. 
Time flies on silver wings, that's for sure...]