“Rain Shower” is about a teenage boy and a girl’s wholesome puppy love.
The boy knew right away that the girl by the brook was the great-granddaughter of Master Yun.
The girl had her hands in the water and was splashing the water around, as if she hadn’t seen a stream like this in Seoul.
For a few days now, she has always stopped to play with water on her way back from school. But, while she had been at the water’s edge until yesterday, today she is sitting right in the middle of the stepping stones.
The boy sat down on the bank. He was waiting for her to move aside.
소년은 개울가에서 소녀를 보자
곧 윤초시네 증손녀딸이라는 걸 알 수 있었다.
소녀는 개울에다 손을 잠그고
물장난을 하고 있는 것이다.
서울서는 이런 개울물을 보지 못하기나 한 듯이.
벌써 며칠째 소녀는 학교서 돌아오는 길에 물장난이다.
그런데 어제까지는 개울기슭에서 하더니
오늘은 징검다리 한 가운데 앉아서 하고 있다.
소년은 개울둑에 앉아 버렸다.
소녀가 비키기를 기다리는 것이다.
Interview by SNU Korean literature professor Bang Min-ho
The story was written during the war. People were killing each other, but Hwang Sun-won wrote a love story about innocent teenagers, telling the world that people like this shouldn’t live in a world filled with death and hatred, that they should live in a beautiful world like the budding love between these two adolescents. I think Hwang Sun-won’s story is beautiful, but the real beauty is found in the time when the story was written.
The water didn’t leak inside the millet stack, but it was dark and cramped. The boy, who sat outside the stack, was exposed to the rain. Steam rose from his shoulders. The girl whispered to him to come inside, but he said he was fine. She asked him once again and he reluctantly entered the stack backward.
As he did so, he ended up crushing the flowers in her arms. But she didn’t mind. The odor from the boy’s wet body attacked her nostrils, but she didn’t turn her head. Rather, the heat from his body appeared to ease her shaking.
수숫단 속은 비가 안 새었다.
그저 어둡고 좁은 게 안 됐다.
앞에 나앉은 소년은 그냥 비를 맞아야만 했다.
그런 소년의 어깨에서 김이 올랐다.
소녀가 속삭이듯이, 이리 들어와 앉으라고 했다.
할 수 없이 뒷걸음질을 쳤다.
그 바람에 소녀가 안고 있는 꽃묶음이 우그러들었다.
그러나 소녀는 상관없다고 생각했다.
비에 젖은 소년의 몸내음새가 확 코에 끼얹혀졌다.
그러나 고개를 돌리지 않았다.
도리어 소년의 몸 기운으로 해서
떨리던 몸이 적이 누그러지는 느낌이었다.
Hwang Sun-won (Born in Taedong, Pyeongannam-do Prov., Mar. 26, 1915~Sep. 14, 2000)
Debuted in 1931 with poem “My Dream”
Won the Academy of Arts Award (1961), Korea Literary Award (1983), Order of Cultural Merit (2000), etc.