Festival Postscript 8: Free Talks (26 September)
Novelists Yun Ko Eun and Oliverio Coelho (Argentina) / Moderator: Park Jin
Yun Ko Eun submitted a drawing entitled “Grand Jete” for inclusion in the 2014 SIWF essay collection. It was pointed out that various interpretations of the elements in her sketch were possible: the ankle bracelet could be seen as a rope, the knots of the buildings could be seen as measuring tapes and the utility pole could be seen as a voyeur. Oliverio Coelho, who submitted a critique of his own story “Towards Extinction,” spoke at length about dreams. He was of the opinion that though dreams may not have a functional role, their inclusion in a work added more depth to the story by making it multilayered. Yun Ko Eun confessed that she had become apprehensive when a few of the dreams she had written into her stories came true in real life. The conversation showed how sensitive writers are to minute fissures and portents in real life.
Poets Cho Yunno and Tarso de Melo (Brazil) / Moderator: Song Jong-won
Tarso de Melo said he felt his poems had restrained and repetitive movements in comparison to Cho Yunno’s poems that seemed to dance freely. Cho Yunno confessed he was apprehensive about his poems losing their lyrical nature and that he was envious of Tarso de Melo’s beautiful rhythm. He also added that the dance of his poetry was not that of a fairy but was closer to the dance of broken-down matter. The unaffected exchange of the two poets who displayed understanding and affection for each other’s works came to a grand finish with the impromptu recitation of Cho Yunno’s “Poetry” proposed by Tarso de Melo. The poem was recited back-to-back in Korean, English, and finally in Portuguese, the translation done by Tarso himself.
Novelists Kim Miwol and G. Ayurzana (Mongol) / Moderator: Song Jong-won
Kim Miwol said she was amazed by the grand thought embodied in G. Ayurzana’s essay. She revealed this was the reason she was envious of the fact that Ayurzana was a Mongolian. G. Ayurzana analyzed the thought and linguistic nature of the Mongolian language which is heavily influenced by abstract concepts. He illustrated this with the example of how Mongolian, traditionally, did not have an expression similar to the English “I love you.” He explained that as a result he actively interpolated dreams into his work. Literary critic Song Jong-won said that what struck him about the two writers was that while Kim Miwol’s stories displayed elements of discord, isolation and lethargy, in G. Ayurzana’s stories communication, including physical communication, was accomplished smoothly and abundantly between generations and between men and women. It was fascinating to analyze and juxtapose the works of the two authors in correlation with the characteristic realism of Korean literature, and with Mongolian culture which is receptive to abstraction and fantasy.