In the 1920s
Such a long way to go to live.
made their way beyond Mongolia
journeyed all the way to near Lake Baikal
and settled in a ruined hut that had to be propped up.
and days so cold their urine froze,
not to freeze to death.
Such a harsh way to live.
On a freezing morning, a girl in Korean dress, long skirt and blouse,a water pot on her head
Once she turned eight, Ŏnnyŏn became an adult.
went on her way
to fetch water
carrying a club to smash the ice.
Not yet called Anna or Tatiana,
just Ŏnnyŏn, Pretty Girl.
Her father had not come home for several days.
Boarding a sledge,
he went off to a hunting lodge
in Bear Forest.
two younger brothers
and two younger sisters.
The family had grown as they journeyed on.
They're not yet called Sergei or Josip or Boris but
She had been living the days
she was destined to live
Translated by Brother Anthony of Taizé and Lee Sang-Wha from Korean.