“Sa (funeral koans)”: Poetry by Yohnmean Yoh

1

Secretary of State Dean Acheson actually greeted the invasion with relief, as it justified massive military appropriations that were essential to carrying out the vision of American pre-eminence outlined in the top-secret National Security Council Report 68 of April 1950.

Jeremy Kuzmarov, “The Korean War: Barbarism Unleashed” (2016)                       

 

… rhetoric would not have been sufficient to spark and sustain support for such a large defense buildup. … Seen in this light, the start of the Korean War on 24-25 June 1950 was a godsend.

Steven Casey, “Selling NSC-68 : the Truman administration, public opinion, and the politics of mobilization, 1950-51” (2005)

 

Korea came along and saved us.

Dean Acheson (July 9, 1953), Princeton seminar

 

… in the Korean people are certain bad traits that cannot be overcome except by actual experience of their evil consequences …

William Langdon, U.S. Department of State (Nov. 1945)

 

… the average town Korean … lies on the ground and sleeps, with his nose over an open drain from which a turkey-buzzard would fly and a decent pig would turn away in disgust.

George Kennan, “The Korean People: The Product of a Decayed Civilization,” Dec. 21, 1905 essay published in Outlook magazine

 

Liberate us from your liberation.

Thich Nhat Hanh, 1968, addressing an international conference in Montreal; from Call Me by My True Names: The Collected Poems of Thich Nhat Hanh (1999)

 

Whoever is listening, be my witness:
I cannot accept this war.
I never could, I never will. […]
“Beware! Turn around and face your real enemies—
ambition, violence, hatred, and greed.”

—Thich Nhat Hanh, “Condemnation” (1964)

 

ironara2

firmament’s blanch-blew as the brew
moonless blight caw caw
luna-moth blizzard: ‘geezer snail home!’ sizzled
da sling. duck cannot quack.
‘tis a feckless, faultfinding nom de
guerrethere’s no turning back.

stink, asshole, stink

bi-mil3 butcheries
non-embellished run-of-the-mill neocolonial blood-spattering
shenanigans
imperious flatulence, shit-lists, Bacillus anthracis courtesies of
Your Heinous’s (DID IT FORGET TO VOW?!)

westerly uh oh
them straight-faced ordered matricide
them licking glum lips. to stultify indigenous
populace’s stuff; li-
zards, irreconciliably din.
‘raped slaves shall, after all, rape slaves’ broadcasts His
Heinous’s psychic spleen. in the interest of
reestablishing/renovating Dis4
for the Chosun few.

 

concerning art of the derivative variety

dim rustling within the aftermath
of the genuine article
obstinately sly turds so-and-so disdained to flush
sowing that stratosphere with darnel (Lolium temulentum)5,
toward wasted centuries.

gnatcatchers, irony police:
may I have a word with you (3x).

O unpretentious stool (i.e., some dupe’s poop):
we be specks upon this monument to sheer psychosis.

The disney war machine smirked and said ‘consent’ for us
flailing arms make for formidable crowds. Win a trip to

Penultimate piss, Muse’ll relinquish thee with this hiss:
Slavery is ended via the prudent application of force;
Sacrifice speaks.

 

Yo Barfs Back (snarky, shrill, impious)

neocolonial fuzz
haranguing unsavory speckled pieces
lodged
within neoslave eyes.

decrying, frothily, Chosun’s immortal/beyond-redemption predilection
for collectivist self-slaughter (ergo them needs partitioning)
(“too much inbreeding!”), neocolonial annalists doth speech; and
besides:

“Trouble is the way of Hell-Chosun’s uninformed rabble from time im-
memorial;
perplexed by the absence of agony,
yellow hordes gravitate towards War
as moths to the Light.”

goat-earwax, quasi-prestidigitation
wraithlike machete, specialized for the back = suggestion (rape-under-
hypnosis-dissimulated-naught-to-over-bear)
dragon-snot, cultural stereotypes = Hilter (sic)
simulated pendulum stings.

Till dormant, pre-delimited consciences are sufficiently roused,
tumble unchurched ultrastructures up,
X’ing the charade for finality (i.e. irrevocable
emancipation)
with nil regrets.

 

rock-pet 4 hire (Dada’s ululation)

Artificial ass
Toxic Semi-Leech
Yawn-inducing   Screech
Life’s a gas
While Starvation Rages

rock-poet for hire                                     (pass the vomit barrel, if you will)
Mr. astute derides the west                                           (meh/ bah/)
hauntingly                                                                           (–ubly)

arms race nausea (psychosis’s prerequisite/indispensable/sine qua non)
humdrum n deadly interwoven destiny (woof KABOOM!)
into the (blood–)red eye of some kinda future
We fly their kites

Three steps en route
life after death

racialist-machiavellianists who define insanity (for their history
books/lectures/major-motion-pictures)

Hitlerite (count them: uncountable millions vanished unfeelingly! less
than items! less than target-practice!)s

 

 

____________________________

1. 사 (sa): four.

2. 일어나라 (ironara): arise.

3. 비밀 (bi-mil): secret.

4. “the lower world; Hades” (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)

5. “a weedy rye grass … with poisonous seeds, often found in grainfields” (Webster’s New World College Dictionary)

 

 

***

Yohnmean Yoh (여연민) is a writer, laborer for peace, and avant-garde musician based in South Korea. His poetry has appeared in Yellow Medicine Review. If he were granted two wishes, they would be for South Korea’s unequivocal apology/willing payment of reparations towards the people of Vietnam—for atrocities committed over the war (circa 1964–1973)—and for Korea’s reunification.

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