Poetry from South Korea

Back in America the month of April is dedicated to poetry. I had a love/hate relationship with this form of writing until I took a class in it with my favorite professor. She taught me the power of a line break and the importance of titles. She turned my turbulent relationship with poetry into one of appreciation and respect. So, even though I started late, here is my first week of poetry for National Poetry Month. I hope you enjoy!

By: Kelly Riley

cherry blossoms
Cherry Blossoms

4/10/16 Cherry Blossoms

We left our home
The promise of beauty
A false lure before us,
Tempting and empty.
Swollen with regret,
We trekked back.
Blossoms hanging from
Branches that once lay
Naked. We left to find
That which was already
Left behind.

locked for real

4/11/16  Locked

I scratched at the door

Chipping pieces, but making

no sound. I wanted to rip it open

spill words through it

stain it and demand it

That door stood silent

Was there light behind it

or was I only casting my own?

When had he turned it off

and left the room? When did

I stop pressing my ear against it?

Just an empty echo from either side.

Just another empty promise,

with a closed door.


4/12/16 Who he is.

It’s funny how looking at someone through the tinted lenses that another holds up casts a person in shades you would never see. Does it taint your view, or merely show you shadows and highlights you may not have seen? What one shows to another, is different than what they show to you. What you bring out of them is something only you can. So it makes sense we hold lenses against each other. It shows us the light, reflecting and refracting in little specks of color, in little pieces of who we are.



4/13/16 외국인

My city lay before me

So large yet so small

I could wrap it in a hug

The market’s metal roof

stretched far in a line

I remember beneath it

I felt like I could walk forever

The river slipped along the edge

cradling the city in a wet sling

We were traced by mountains,

tall and protective

And also ominous and foreign.

But really I, was the only speck

the only piece in my vision

that was out of place, that was

deposited in this place, not

bred and born to breathe the

mountain air, eat the dripping fruit.

I was the only thing that was foreign.


4/14/2016  Weight

I felt eyes on me

Piercing from the trees

Incased in invisible skin

I walked freely, no signs

No walls, no fences

To keep me from

Letting my feet carry

Me through those

Brightly lit woods.

But it tugged at my gut

Laying heavy across my

Shoulders like a wet blanket.

What had happened here?




4/15/2016   Ego

She sat there, legs crossed

Eyes glazed and foggy,

but staring into forever.

Thoughts dripped down her skull,

slipping over her neck, sliding

down her back and pooling

at the very base of her, cool

and wet but not refreshing.

They lay stagnant, and glistening.

Caught between themselves

just like she was, caught between


spring snow

4/16/16 Spring Snow

Spring was trickling in.

The wind warm on your skin

As it slipped against you

The biting chill of winter had

retreated, tucking itself away

But fields and streets lay in

blankets of white, thick as if

with snow. The warm weather

flakes of cherry blossoms flitting down,

laying gently, softly and calmly

as spring snow.


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