I am trying to translate a song and it's pretty difficult one and I'm unsure just what kind of meaning these lyrics have:

この手を伝う 一本の孤独は
人の色が 褪せたままで

My problem is with 一本 because I have always used it as a counter and the word after this is 孤独, so I don't quite understand well. I looked up on Jisho and there is this meaning of: "single-minded focus on ...​"
Can someone give some examples and a better explanation when it's used this way, when it is not used as a counter?


If this is from this song, "一本の孤独 that runs on my hand/arm" refers to his radial artery (or maybe a red line made by the flowing blood). This is not an idiomatic phrase nor a common metaphor, so you just need to understand the whole context of this song. 一本気 is not relevant at all.

  • It sounded a bit strange to me at first, because I could have easily translated "This solitude that runs through these hands", but I wanted if I could place more emphasis due to those words. Dec 5 '18 at 14:39
  • @AliceB.Rabbit 本 perhaps works as a hint about what 孤独 refers to (what is a thin and long thing on the arm?), but I don't think there is an important emphasis.
    – naruto
    Dec 5 '18 at 14:43
  • The fact that it was connected with 孤独, which means loneliness is what made it a bit weird for me. The rest of the lyrics do give imagery of hands, veins/pulse and all that, but what I wrote above was just a tad weird, because I couldn't count loneliness, right? xD Dec 5 '18 at 14:51
  • @AliceB.Rabbit Yes this is a fairly weird expression in isolation, but also is a valid metaphor if there is enough context. The first thing I did after reading your question was to google this phrase for the entire lyrics.
    – naruto
    Dec 6 '18 at 1:34

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