Sŏng Ch’an-Kyŏng: Jesus the Poet

Jesus,
You are truly the poet of poets.
People often say Homer
Is the great grandfather of poets
Yet you are the very father of Homer.
If the core of poetry lies in metaphors
There is no metaphor in the world
That can exceed your marvellous metaphors.
If the kernel of poetry is in passion
There is no fire in the world
That can rival your holy fire.
If the essence of poetry exists in beauty
There is no such beauty in the world
As can vie with the plain and simple beauty
Of your verses on the lilies of the field.
If poetry is a shaping of life force
A mass of deep emotion
Or a vessel of verity and truth-
Faced with the life force, deep emotion
Verity and truth of your words
We can only strive
To imitate.
If poetry is a forest of symbols
There is no forest of symbols
Not buried in your forest of symbols.
Jesus,
You were ever lonely, ever sad.
Every kind of emotion moved over your constantly
Like the winds and the waves.
Jesus,
To think that you are the foremost of poets
Makes me inexpressibly happy.
The cross you bore was so heavy and large
People often remember that only, but
Jesus,
You are truly the poet of poets.

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