When the Plug Gets Unplugged
Author: Kim Hyesoon
Translator: Don Mee Choi
Publisher: Tinfish Press (2005)
The poems in When the Plug Gets Unplugged, by prominent Korean poet Kim Hyesoon, are spoken by rats, rats who forage, rats endangered by human beings, rats who listen to people die in a collapsing department store—rats who are, in other words, the voices of modern Seoul, or (to risk the pun) the modern soul. Kim Hyesoon's work is now receiving the attention it deserves in the United States, due to the efforts of her fine translator, Don Mee Choi. Anyone interested in poetry from Korea, or poetry written in a distinctive voice, should read this collection.
". . . the power of this work lies precisely in the eerie convincingness with which it appears to deliver to us a perfectly realized, specific self, even as that self is threatened, stretched, and torn by monolithic forces of alienation."
–K. Silem Mohammed