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15 May 2008 @ 01:11 pm
Why I Still(?) Shouldn't Be Allowed To Write Poetry In A Language That Isn't Native To Me  
So, for my Tai Chi class "final," I wrote some really horrible haiku (in Japanese, duh, what other language can you write haiku in? Next thing you'll be telling me that sonnets are great in Japanese. Oh, yeah, the iambic pentameter sooooo works in a language with no syllable stress, you-non-mora-using monkey-language-people!)

Ahem. Anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah, haiku. Of course, I wrote it all vertical and stuff, since any other way would be wrong, but here's what I came up with (five haiku, one for each element):


Pretty awful, I know! Especially that last one, yikes -- complete gibberish. But I snuck in the character for each of the Chinese elements into each of the haiku (木火土金水 -- although in one case I used an alternate reading), and also snuck chi/qi (氣 or 气 -- well, the Japanese version, of course, which is ki or 気) into the middle there. I'm so proud, it's sad. Even though I kinda did it wrong, left out the seasonal codewords (季語) and all that.

Oh, I suppose most people here can't read Japanese (you whiners). So I guess I can translate and stuff:

haru no kaze, tori ya hanami ya, midori no ki
wind of spring, birds and flower viewing and, trees of green (so inane!)

dokomo oto, matsuri ga hikaru, hanabi saku
everywhere sound, festivals shine, fireworks bloom (okay, I kinda almost like this one)

tsuchi shimeru, seimei no hachi, soshite ki mo
dampened earth, bowl of existence, and also spirit (um, well)

henshoku, rakujitsu ochiba, subete kin
(fading) change of color, setting sun fallen leaf, all gold (well, I guess)

samu mizu to, ryuudou fuyu, monoshizuka
water cold and, winter flowing, a still thing (yuck!)

Yeah, there's a reason I'm not a poet.
In the mood: sickashamed
asakiyume: the sourceasakiyume on May 15th, 2008 10:19 pm (UTC)
"hanabi saku" is nice. It's especially nice because "saku" can also mean "rend," so the fire-flowers can be both blooming as flowers and rending the air as explosions.

"monoshizuka" means more, "very quiet"

I think you're overbrimming with poetic spirit :-)
Douglas Triggs: taodoubt72 on May 16th, 2008 12:55 am (UTC)
Saku: see, non-native lucky!

monoshizuka: yeah, I kinda knew that actually, but no translation is quite right (which goes for several of the words. I mean, flower viewing implies a lot just by itself).

And eh, I've done my duty for the Emperor. I'm done.
sham2007 on May 17th, 2008 04:35 pm (UTC)



It's cool enough!
Douglas Triggsdoubt72 on May 21st, 2008 09:35 pm (UTC)
Re: 俳句だ