Translator's Note


Some years ago, Amsterdam-based installation artist Mire Lee and Seoul-based cultural critic Lee Yeonsook read together the radical work of Kim Eon Hee, also known as “the Medusa of Korean poetry.” The two friends visited the poet in her native Jinju, a conservative town known for bleeding out feminist poets, to select the poems for Mire Lee to paint on the walls of a future exhibition. Sool Park and I then translated their selections into German and English, respectively, and the 2022 exhibit at MMK Frankfurt was named after a line in this poem: “Look, I’m a fountain of filth raving mad with love.”

Serendipitously(?), Kim Eon Hee’s misanthropy reached me at a low point, and I began singing and raving myself through her poetic “I.” I am honored to have experienced such catharsis and finished turning to shit. Mightily, mightily may we carry on.

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