An nyoung ha seh yo

I met a svelte Korean girl
Who I once tried to woo with words.
Her native tongue I would translate
With aid from a Rosetta tape.
The tape told me, “To say hello,
You should say, ‘An nyoung ha seh yo.”

And for a time we clung, us two,
In school and midnight rendezvous
And shared our dreams o’er kimbap plates
Until the hours waxed too late.
Still all I knew was how “Hello”
Translates to “An nyoung ha seh yo.”

Yet college romance brings much pain
It’s best we never meet again
And some hurts are too hard to take:
My first love and my first heart break.
One last Korean phrase I know:
“Goodbye: an nyoung hi ga seh yo.”

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