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Glass window

Posted February. 18, 2023 04:15,   

Updated February. 18, 2023 04:15


When you hear the title ‘windowpane’, it is easy to associate that with the poet Jeong Ji-yong. Although Jeong Ji-yong's work is excellent of course, Kim Gi-rim's 'window' is just as remarkable. The two were representatives of Korean literary circles in the 1930s. The coincidence that they wrote different poems with the same title is quite interesting. Moreover, there is a peculiar overlap found in their poems. Like Jeong Ji-yong, Kim Gi-rim could not hide his inner feelings in front of the ‘window’. He couldn't cry in front of others, so he may have turned around and cried holding onto the window. However, Kim Gi-rim is a poet who does not fit well with tears or sadness. This is because he is intelligent and sophisticated, and strikes as cold rather than warm. He was actually a learned man and by profession, a teacher and lecturer. He was an adult who could not confide in his true feelings anywhere. Even though he was such a person, he was found here in the midst of sobbing with his forehead against the glass window. He is sorrowful, saying that he is very weak, that his heart can be blurred by even a small sigh, and his heart can break even in the moonlight.

When we read this poem, we discover the unfamiliar Kim Ki-rim. Behind the glasses, you will encounter the extremely human side of an intellectual with sharp gaze. He seemed to have no regret or remorse, but it was not the case. Even for him, who was like steel, there were nights of weeping and writhing in agony, and it is natural because he's human too. It also means that it is not our fault that our hearts are brittle.

임희윤기자 imi@donga.com