Calligraphy of Six Poems on Flowers
Calligraphy by Lee Mi-Kyung (pen name Flower Garden), Korean, born 1918
The verses on this screen were written by twentieth-century poets in the classical style (sijo). They read (translations by Professor Ji-moon Suh, Korea University):
You are aloof but tender, beauteous yet chaste.
Your carriage is lofty, and even your smile is restrained.
Your fragrance, though delicate and shy, permeates.
Plum Blossom, Chong In-bo
Without any rouge or dye your loveliness stands out.
Though the season is cold and harsh,
Your leaves glisten, and your petals are radiant.
Camellia, Yang Dong-gi
Your purity and simplicity mirror the soul of our nation.
Your sweet fragrance and elegant beauty
Are gifts of the angel of Spring upon her beloved maid.
You are so pure as to be almost ethereal.
You are purer and more ethereal than a lucid sheet of ice.
With fragrance added to white purity, even the moon must envy you.
Pear Blossom, Chong In-bo
Orbs of loveliness blossoming in my yard,
You seem asleep, buoyed by the gentle breeze
Serenely exhaling fragrance with every breath.
Your buds swell during the moonlit night and burst open in the morning.
You vie with sun during the day and fold up at sunset.
Blossoming one after another, you guard my door from spring to fall.
Hibiscus, Pak Pyong-sun
* Works in the collection are moved off view for many different reasons. Although gallery locations on the website are updated regularly, there is no guarantee that this object will be on display on the day of your visit.