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In the Japanese version of the FFX-2 song "1000 Words," there are two lyrics styled as questions:

行かないでと涙こぼしたら?

待てないよと肩を落としたら?

My translations are:

行かないでと涙こぼしたら? - What if I shed a tear if you didn't go? / What if you don't go and I shed a tear?

待てないよと肩を落としたら? - What if I dropped my shoulders if you can't wait? / What if you can't wait and I dropped my shoulders?

I know the particle たら at the end of a sentence can get read as a "what if" scenario but does と affect the order of events? Does the phrase before と come first or after? Does 行かないで in the first question have any effect on the order? And how do you know what tense to use for the verb attached to たら?

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  • Pretty sure those と are quotative rather than conditional e.g. if I shed a tear that says "don't go". Not giving a full answer because my translations would likely be a bit ropey. Nov 14, 2022 at 20:28

1 Answer 1

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These two と are quotative. See: What does にと do?

行かないでと涙こぼしたら?
What if I shed a tear (saying) "Don't go"?

待てないよと肩を落としたら?
What if I dropped my shoulders (saying) "I can't want"?

Note that conditional-と always follows the non-past predicative form of a verb/adjective (including ない/ぬ), e.g., 行くと, 行かないと, 青いと, 簡単だと.

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  • So a と between verbs means there's a quotation, and some phrases like these can omit the quotation brackets 「」?
    – A.T.A.
    Nov 15, 2022 at 15:59
  • @A.T.Anderson Brackets are always optional in Japanese.
    – naruto
    Nov 16, 2022 at 2:14

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