Snow at 5 PM: Translations of an Insignificant Japanese Poet

The rescue of a literary manuscript results in a war of words over the interpretation of 107 haiku about New York's Central Park. In the battle of commentaries, what is at stake is nothing less than the meaning of America in an imaginary but highly plausible future. Re-envisioning Vladimir Nabokov's Pale Fire for a technologised age, Snow at 5 PM discovers revolutionary uses, and abuses, for literature and history.

Excerpt from Snow at 5 PM: Translations of an Insignificant Japanese Poet

On a leafless twig
a caterpillar of snow
will change to nothing

We change from nothing to nothing. A meditation on human transience founded on an exact observation. Snow on a twig is long, bumpy, and hairy.

Gaudy Boy LLC (Bench Press imprint)


Jee Leong Koh

Jee Leong Koh is the author of Steep Tea, named a Best Book of the Year by UK's Financial Times, and a Finalist for the Lambda Literary Award. He has published four other books of poems, a hybrid work of fiction, a volume of essays, and a collection of zuihitsu, The Pillow Book, which was shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize. His second Carcanet book Inspector Inspector is forthcoming in August 2022.