One night, when I was still feeling the effects of my late afternoon coffee, I had dodie’s song “Would You Be So Kind” stuck in my head and as I was humming it, I flipped some parts into Korean to see how they felt. I’m not fluent in Korean, but the words in dodie’s song were simple enough for me to translate with some degree of confidence. And because they felt nice in Korean, I kept on doing it and by the time it was midnight, I translated the entire song into Korean.
I stared down at the scribbles, a bit in disbelief that it was real. I always thought that translating a song would be so much harder, but with a mix of determination and the residual effects of coffee, I was able to push my way through the whole song without too much of a headache.
The next step was to record it and share it. But just the thought of it stressed me out, because I hadn’t tried to record and arrange something in a while because of technical difficulties (involving a silicone bead, broken headphones, and overthinking). But I told myself that 2018 would be different, that I would push myself and just try, at least, to put myself out there, step by step each month. I already did so with my poetry by submitting to the Iowa Chapbook prize and the Kundiman fellowship, so why hold back from my music (even though I felt like it wasn’t fully up to par)? Continue reading “Translating Butterflies: The Korean Version of dodie’s “Would You Be So Kind””