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Sijo Masters in Translation

Korean Sijo by Sin Hum

(1566 - 1628)

Sin Hum, whose pen name was Sangch'on (Elephant Village), was known as one of the Four Greats of hanmun (literature written by Koreans in Chinese) during the turbulent reigns of three kings. He also wrote extensively in his native language, producing 30 volumes of essays and poems in his productive career.  He was minister of home affairs under King Sonjo, was exiled when Kwanghae-gun succeeded to the throne, but later became prime minister when Injo led a successful coup. Thirty of his sijo and other short verse on a variety of subjects have come down to us.

Snowfall blankets the mountain village and buries my rocky lane.
No need to open the brushwood gate, none will come to see me.
Still, a crescent moon smiles brightly down, the truest friend I have.

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All Rights Copyright 2004 by Larry Gross. Please do not reprint without written permission.

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