Hansel & Gretel
Portrait of the Hunter: Sooyong Park worked as a nature documentary Producer and Director for EBS(Educational Broadcasting System) in South Korea from 1991 to 2010. His programs have always focused on the wild Siberian tiger ‘Panthera tigris altaica’.
As a researcher and documentary film-maker, he studied Siberian tigers for twenty years. His filming projects cover areas such as the Maritime Province of Russia, Manchuria in China, the North Korean border with China, and Taebaek Mountains range in South Korea.
Sooyong Park spent many months tracking Siberian tigers but also many months incarcerated in a hide, hoping to catch a glimpse of a tiger. Totally alone in the forests of far-eastern Russia, he endured temperatures of -30 degrees Celsius and the most basic conditions, in an effort to capture this most elusive tiger on film.
Hansel & Gretel
He has been waiting for months. He has seen the leaves drop.
He has seen snow and he has seen snow melt.
This evening he crouches in the hideout, as usual.
Eating his nightly ration of white rice, he watches
the snow fall like a blind man dreaming.
An apparition emerges from the bloodless frost.
A mirage? Two shafts ooze across the landscape like a hot lava–-
at last, he blinks and sees them truly.
Twin specters pick through the trees. Two sets
of white green fire flies. One is male,
the other, a female — shadow of her brother.
Black malt and golden against the night’s
ashen pearl. Vinegar drops in a pool of oil.
Four months ago, Sooyong chose this spot
because of its proximity to a hot spring.
Beasts would draw to it, he thought.
The twins skid across the ice like shooting stars.
They wrestle, collapse together, lose their footing.
Tiger cub tumbles over tiger cub.
The girl dips a paw into the steaming well.
The boy climbs a tree above the spring.
The boy falls from the tree and lands dangerously
close to the dugout where our watcher lies in wait.
The cub leaps forward; fore paw thrust suddenly
into the ground where splinters burst around the leg.
He flails, withdraws — a claw stained red.
The boy cub plods off, each print marked
by a sunspot–
and joyfully, still crouched, the man cries
from one eye while his other spills black wine
from bull’s eyed gouge.
Gratuitous: my boyfriend and my cousin made a really beautiful song yesterday.
Colors I’ve Never Seen.