Questions tagged [poetry]

詩歌. Japanese poetry, including haiku and tanka

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2
votes
2answers
148 views

What is the difference in nuance between 思ったら and 思えたら?

敷島の日本の国に人二人有りとし思はば何か歎かむ is always translated into modern Japanese as some variation of 大和の国にあなたが二人いると思えたら何かを嘆こう and I'm wondering why is 思はば translated as 思えたら. Why not 思ったら? -aば is the conditional ...
4
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2answers
452 views

What is the function of 「や」 in this sentence?

古池や 蛙飛び込む 水の音 This is a haiku by Matsuo Bashō. Is the や particle doing what it normally does, listing items?
3
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1answer
68 views

How to write and sing Shigin (Japanese way of chanting poem) properly?

1, Should Shigin be written in Yamato (old Japanese language)? Or an even older version of Japanese? Can I write it in modern Japanese? 2, Are there rules for Shigin? Such as setting rhythms, melodies,...
5
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1answer
211 views

Trouble understanding small bits of poetry in a japanese novel

Recently, I bought my first all-in-japanese novel to improve my reading skills. The novel itself uses a modern, very simple grammar (it's Ningen no kouta by Kō Machida) so it's not hard to understand. ...
0
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1answer
92 views

空睨んでも - how can I tell when sora is being used for something other than the sky

I like to translate K-pop and anime themes as a hobby to help me understand and memorize the language. In Gurenge, a certain line sticks out: 夜の匂いに 空睨んでも. My research suggests that if Sora comes ...
1
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1answer
754 views

Is there anything special about single vowel words?

I'm not sure if this is a useful question or not. But I was surprised to notice まさか (masaka) was using a single vowel (a) for the whole word. The surprise came from the connection to "bakana" (バカな) ...
1
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1answer
92 views

meaning of hiragana in a verse

This sentence is from a poem: トイレットペーパーしゅるる. The katakanas mean "toilet paper". How about the hiraganas? I thought it would be a verb because of the る-ending, but can't find a verb like this in ...
3
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1answer
210 views

Do the Japanese read Classical Chinese poems in Japanese or in on-readings?

The pros and cons of both approaches are obvious. 1) If you read by conversion into Japanese through kanbun, you get the sense. Meanwhile, you lose the rhythm, and sometimes it is not obvious what ...
3
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1answer
145 views

事に感ず and Shigin vocabulary

I recently heard of the poem named Koto ni Kanzu, and I came across this page that provides the poem's text, along with a pretty convincing interpretation. The poems reads as follows (I only added the ...
3
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2answers
154 views

Translation struggles - Kuroshio Current being mentioned in a patriotic song

I'm trying to make sense of an old Japanese patriotic song 五・一五事件 昭和維新行進曲 陸軍の歌, and there's a line that contains a reference to the Kuroshio Current. The event this song was written about (the so-...
2
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1answer
139 views

Advice and critics on a Haiku [closed]

I am trying my hand on writing some Haiku in Japanese. As I am by far an expert, I wanted to have your opinion on this one. 七の雪 立つ竹も鷺 冬の時 A few questions I have : Can you understand the image in it, ...
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0answers
109 views

I need help with a Japanese Haiku

I need to know if this follows the rules of a traditional Japanese haiku as well as if it's any good. My Japanese is still very much at a beginning level but it's very important to me that this haiku ...
0
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1answer
123 views

What is the best word choice for "cycle"?

In this poem, I want to say "...is the cycle of fall foliage", but I'm not sure if meguri is a good choice. I do not want to use katakana. 。。。は秋の葉の巡り(めぐり) By the way, I'm still learning this app. ...
3
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1answer
422 views

Why is 「てふ」 pronounced 「ちょう」?

I recently purchased a copy of One Hundred Leaves: A new annotated translation of the Hyakunin Isshu to try and improve my Japanese reading level. In addition to the English translation, each poem ...
5
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1answer
163 views

Is a sentence containing two similar kanji any known figure of speech

Searching for Japanese poetry or simply reading song lyrics, I can find very often some sentences that contain two kanji characters of specific properties: They are usually close to each other, one is ...
3
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1answer
231 views

How do I understand 「わが身世にふる ながめせし間に」

This might be a difficult question but let me give it a try here. I have trouble understanding this poem by 小野小町: 花の色は うつりにけりな いたづらに わが身世にふる ながめせし間に I understand that the words 「ふる」 and 「ながめ」 are ...
3
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0answers
171 views

Phonetic Mapping of the Hiragana System Used in the Okinawan Omoro Sōshi

The classical Okinawan poetry collection the Omoro Sōshi is written (mostly) in Hiragana, but the phonetic mapping of the characters to sounds seems to be different to their standard mapping. For ...
0
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1answer
82 views

Trouble parsing lyrics under lack of particles

As always, we have to take non-sentence poetry at face value; sometimes it is almost always ambiguous, but there is probably another perspective I am over looking. Taking a look at the final verse ...
2
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2answers
109 views

The difference between もう and まふ

I have seen the poem title 君死にたまふことなかれ spelled 君死にたもうこと勿れ. I'm assuming given the poet's reputation, that まふ is some antiquated word analogous to the modern もう. What is it's use and meaning?
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1answer
120 views

How does Bylth's translation of this haiku by Kiin hold up?

柴ふねの立枝も春や朝かすみ (shiba-fune no risshi mo haru ya asa-kasumi) How spring-like the branches Standing up in the firewood boat In the morning mist --Kiin Probably my ...
3
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1answer
277 views

looking for a haiku maybe written by Sasaki Sadako

I'm looking for the Japanese text of the following haiku, maybe written by Sasaki Sadako : Statute of A-bomb child she seems as if walking after a butterfly I found the English text here. The author ...
6
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1answer
601 views

Is the layout of this text supposed to resemble a style of poem?

While playing a Japanese video game, I became curious about the layout of these book pages that appear each time you finish a chapter of the game. The text of each page summarizes one of the chapters,...
2
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1answer
139 views

Would a phrase 人の跡を求める be understood without a reference to Basho?

There is a quote from Matsuo Basho: 古人の跡を求めず、古人の求めしところを求めよ Nowadays, would a phrase 人の跡を求める be understood as "to follow someone"s footsteps". Would it be grammatically valid in contemporary ...
4
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2answers
332 views

Couple of classical Japanese questions

I found a poem by Nagai Kafu entitled 震災 (The Earthquake) in a volume of Japanese prose and poetry. It's a short poem about the Ansei Edo Earthquake (安政江戸地震) in 1855 which destroyed the red light ...
2
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1answer
191 views

Does there exist a poem that uses direction to change its meaning?

I've been reading about writing order and the question has been poking at me for a while now: since writing order could theoretically introduce ambiguity, is it possible that someone has written a ...
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2answers
1k views

What are the basic physical differences between japanese poetry and prose?

I am not asking about genre, meaning or anything other subjective issues. I am talking about the following type of things in english: English prose (no rhyme, no rhythm). May also have literal ...
4
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2answers
1k views

Why does this haiku have a 5-6-5 pattern?

I was amazed to read the following haiku in "小林 一茶" (a book written by 宗左近/Sō Sakon about the famous poet) : 我と来てあそぶ親のない雀 At first sight, the text given by 宗左近 doesn't seem regular : 5+6+5 morae ?....
5
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1answer
1k views

How do you indicate line breaks in a poem when it is written without actual line breaks?

In English, if you have a poem, like Roses are red, Violets are blue, Sugar is sweet, And so are you. and you need to write it on just one line (for reasons of space or whatever), you would ...
11
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3answers
725 views

Mora count for 思ふ in Classical Japanese?

During an analysis I was performing of the poems contained in the 古今集 I noticed a curious pattern. Otherwise perfectly-formed poems included in the collection seemed to ignore the morae-count on a ...
13
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1answer
757 views

Are haiku typically "padded" when read aloud?

I was once told that haiku should be "padded" so that instead of 5/7/5, they fit an 8/8/8 meter: ■■■■■□□□ ← wait for 3 beats after this line ■■■■■■■□ ← wait for 1 beat after this line ■■■■■□□□ ←...
5
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1answer
316 views

How wrong is my constructed poem?

I tried writing a classical Japanese poem: 赤き空 青かりたり根 夢がごとし 元を返るべし 汚さざらまし And here is a rough literal translation: The red sky, The origin that was once blue, Like seeing a dream, It would be best ...
2
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1answer
153 views

u and Senryu placement

I am in the process of publishing a book on verse, more particularly, "American Haiku and Senryu -- 1008 Pauses Along the Path" and I need to ascertain whether or not the title is appropriate, i.e. is ...
2
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0answers
414 views

Looking for the original Japanese of this haiku [closed]

I'm sure this is a translation of a haiku but I'm not able to find the original text or even the author. As the sun goes down the birds land one by one. I've been trying to Google it but can't seem ...
5
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4answers
1k views

Redistributable Anthology of Haiku or Tanka in Electronic Form

I think a graded anthology of haiku or tanka might make an excellent chrestomathy for learning kanji and japanese. Are there any appropriately-licensed (e.g. creative commons / public domain) haiku ...
6
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1answer
674 views

Archaic words used in haiku

My teacher who practices haiku told me that in haiku they still use the traditional names for months. I was wondering which other words are still used in haiku.