Resurrection Story of the Dead One


O, my friend
The Son of Man came and lived
The true Son of Man of history
The one who preached liberation with his body
The one who shouted justice until his throat burst
The one who put his life on the line to herald a new world

Preaching a new world of liberation and justice
Was dangerous to human beings, a double crime
A crime of blasphemy slanderous to the religiously proud
A crime of impertinence offensive to the politically powerful

He was killed, my friend
Even on the cross, I say
And killed he stayed in a tomb locked up
In the ground buried and suffocating he stayed
He stayed dead constantly that way
Utterly could not move for three days

But, my friend
Death could dominate him no more
For he was the son of the heavens
The tomb could keep him no more
For he was the son of the earth
The rock could obstruct him no more
For he was the son of Minjung1

He came to life, my friend
He returned living
To where we were hiding behind locked doors with bated breath
He came beside us, we who were weeping in despair
Beside us, I say

But, my friend
He did not stand up on his own. that Jesus
He did not resurrect himself, that Jesus
It was not at all with his own power that he walked out

Our Heavenly Father, the Great
Father of Minjung
My friend, he was enraged
The first time since the Creation he finally moved
Gathering in his hands the might of the universe
At last, he began his strategy
He breathed the life force into that stiff wax
The one drunk with the sleep of death
He pulled him up with his sinewy arms
The one who was lying motionless
He smashed the massive boulder to free
The one who was sealed tight
He had liberated him, raised him up
To stand face to face with the one
who had killed him

My friend
Resurrection is surely coming
Our resurrection
But not as azaleas blossoming in the deep woods
Resurrection does not come that way
Netlike fresh green grass amid dead grass
Resurrection does not come that way
Not even by wailing and clutching at the tomb’s door
Resurrection does not come that way

But my friend Resurrection is surely coming
Our resurrection It comes reviving the flame that flickers
When oil is poured to revive the lamp
Resurrection comes when you bind the wound
Resurrection comes when you repay your eternal enemy with love
Resurrection comes, it comes at last

My. friend, the dead are the hope of the living
The living are the hope of the dead
That is so, that is truly so
The hope that will come to life
The hope that will not die My friend, because of the dead
The living stays living without tasting death
Because of the living There is hope for the dead to live again

My friend
The dead can live only when they are revived
And so you, my friend You who claim to be living
Drive out the spirit of death from this moaning land
The evil spirit of submission
Over this land which lies severed in the waist
Let blow the fierce wind of life
The spring wind of freedom, the whirlwind of justice
The hurricane of the new world
And so resurrect our golden mountains and rivers
Make them live
Unravel that which binds the comrade’s body
The shroud of the U.S. flag and the south Korean flag
Untie that which binds the Minjung’s hands and feet
The nylon rope of foreign power
Sever that which binds our people’s waist
The iron chain of subjugation

My friend, you who live
You whose name is registered on the roster of the living
Wield the wooden club
Drive out the power of darkness
Cry out with a bloody throat and beckon the dawn of history
Light up with Molotov cocktail flames
Where the comrades who left the great plan can return
The dawn of resurrection


1Minjung in the Korean language means people, particularly people such as farmers, workers, the urban poor and others who are oppressed by the existing social structure.

(Ed. note. The poem above was written in April 1992 by the Rev. HONG Kuen Soo from his prison cell in South Korea as his Easter reflection.)