Dawn of Labor
- About the Book
Dawn of Labor, at last translated into English, is the legendary South Korean poet Park Nohae’s first collection, published in 1984 when he was twenty-seven years old. Despite a government ban, the book sold a million copies and propelled Park Nohae as the generation’s leading resistance poet. Dawn of Labor is an enduring classic that shook a society, transformed lives, and demonstrated the power of poetry.
The war of night labor once over,
I pour cold soju over my aching heart.
Ah . . . I can’t go on like this for long.
For sure, I can’t go on like this.
—“Dawn of Labor”
If I ever kill myself, I’ll probably do it at dawn.
—“For a Peaceful Evening”
We too want to become heaven.
Not a dark clouded heaven
that presses down,
but a clear blue heaven
over a world that lifts one another.
- About the Author(s)
Park Nohae, AuthorPark Nohae is a renowned South Korean activist-poet and photographer. The Dawn of Labor was his first poetry book. The collection transformed him into a leading resistance poet.
Cheehyung Harrison Kim, TranslatorCheehyung Harrison Kim is associate professor of Korean history at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.
Brother Anthony, TranslatorBrother Anthony of Taizé, who also goes by his Korean name An Sonjae, is a literature scholar and translator and is professor emeritus of English language and literature at Sogang University in Seoul.