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"Black Box" by Song Sokze

#Books on Demand l 2019-03-26

Books on Demand

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Song Sokze’s “Black Box” caused sensation as a “crazy piece of work” when it was published in 2014. 

The problem is not whether I can write well or not. The bigger problem is that I have to show something completely new and different every time. And even a bigger problem is whether I can move the hearts of readers. 

The older I get, my idea bank grows smaller and my emotional energy weaker, making it harder to inspire my readers.

Requests for stories are like court summons that I’m too scared to open. 

문제는 잘 쓰느냐 못 쓰느냐이고,

더 큰 문제는 언제나 전과 다르고 새로운 것을 보여줘야 한다는 것이고

더 큰 문제는 독자를 움직일 수 있느냐 없느냐였다.

나이가 들면 소설을 쓸 거리가 차 있는 탱크는 줄어들고,

감정의 에너지는 약화되어서 독자를 움직이기가 힘들어진다.

어쩌다 들어오는 소설 청탁이 뜯어보기도 두려운 출두 통지서나 다름없다.

Interview by SNU Korean Literature Professor Bang Min-ho

This small device called a vehicle black box contains stories and hidden truths. The protagonist of the story is named Park Se-kwon and the salesman is also named Park Se-kwon. This story aims to show the relationship between two egos within a person. People see Park Se-kwon as a writer, but they don’t know who else is inside that person. The story is titled “Black Box” to show other entities that are hidden inside.

You were like everyone else. Having the same name didn’t mean anything. 

Suicide, homicide, natural death, death by accident, death by illness, overdose, drowning... the deaths I have given you, my avatars, are just as varied as the lives I have given you. I buried you immediately, because I could not bear to look at your long-hanging tongue for a long time. 

There was nothing I could do. I, I loved you, all of you.

You will live forever in the collective memories from the ancient times that we call letters. In my, my library of death, or stored in my, oh, my black box.

결국 너도 다른 사람과 마찬가지였다.

동명이인이라는 건 아무런 의미도 없었다.

자살, 피살, 자연사, 사고사, 병사, 중독사, 익사...

내가 나의 분신인 너희들에게 부여한 죽음은 삶 만큼이나 다양하다.

나는 너의 길게 늘어진 혀를 

오래도록 보고 있을 수 없어 금방 묻어버렸다.

어쩔 수 없었다.

너를, 너희를, 모두를 난, 난, 사랑했다.

너, 너, 너, 너희는,

문자라는 고대로부터의 집단 기억 속에,

영원히 남아, 남아 있을거야.

내, 내, 내, 나의, 죽음의 도서관에,

또는 블랙, 오 블랙, 오, 블랙박스에, 박, 박제가 되어.

Song Sokze (Born on Jul. 5, 1960, Sangju, Gyeongsangbuk-do Prov.)

: Debuted in 1986 with poem “Window Washer” in Munhak-sasang

Won the 30th Hankook Ilbon Literature Award with short story “Wandering”

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