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Invisible Mountains

Translated by:
Publisher: , 1994
Original title: 보이지 않는 산
Link to online store *

From the back cover:

Some years ago Shin Chang-ho gave me two clay figurines he made himself. I always keep them in front of me. The figurines, with their lovely quizzical expressions, seem to carry on an endless dialogue on the things nearest to Shin Chang-ho’s heart: poetry, pottery, painting.

What is a poet? Someone, I suppose, with an eye, an ear, and a heart. And if you really want to raise standards, you might add a sense of form, and throw in wit and humor as savories. Some are born poets, others find themselves poets, almost by accident. Some poets burn themselves out in youth, others do their best work in old age. Some poets are mean and crotchety; others are loving and transcendent. Shin Chang-ho’s poems bear the stamp of the man: they are simple, unpretentious, funny, gentle, wise and transcendent; an eloquent testimony to the life and times of a man who says, with a typical twinkle in his eye, that when finally he joins his ancestors in modest repose, he will remember himself.

Kevin O’Rourke

Available from LTI Korea, but very difficult to find elsewhere.

* Where the book is available from a number of sources, they are prioritised as follows: (1) Amazon UK site, or for the more recent uploads (2) Amazon US site (3) Other sites in US or Europe, including second-hand outlets (4) LTI Korea, where the title is advertised as available from there (5) Onlines stores in Korea. Links to and Amazon UK site contain an affiliate code which, should you make a purchase, gives a small commission to LKL at no additional cost to you.