Haiku translations: a collaboration between Emiko Miyashita, Claudia Brefeld and Eva Moering
"Here the idea and background of this project can be found.
Selection and comments by Kazuhiro Nakamura, HIA vice-president
月 天 心 一日 ひ と 日 の 職 に 就 き
tsukitenshin / hitohi hitohi no / shoku ni tsuki
high moon. . .
changes from day to day
宮 田 勝 MIYATA Masaru
Since he does not have a steady job, the author is forced to lead an unstable life. He returns home late at night. The moon is already high in the sky and illuminates the lonely figure. Tsukitenshin (high moon) reminds me of Buson's “A high moon goes through the poor city”. Both haiku are lonely / unhappy, but the haiku here is sad in view of today's unequal society and so you can feel the loneliness of today's city dwellers.
夏 負 け や 手 首 を 振 っ て 巻 く 時 計
natsumake ya / tekubi o futte / maku tokei
Exhaustion in summer -
a movement of the wrist
winds the clock
マ ッ ク MACK (Canada)
The summer in Japan is hot, humid and long, also called “100-day summer”, and is the background of the seasonal word “summer fatigue” or “summer thinness”. It must be even hotter in Canada due to global warming. The author shakes the watch vigorously to cheer himself up. It is more to himself than to the watch. The season word is easy to recognize and is well represented with this little plot.
熱 帯 夜 宇宙 の 密 か ら 星零 れ
nettaiya / uchū no mitsu kara / hoshi kobore
sultry night. . .
from the densely packed cosmos
a star falls out
川口 比 呂 人 KAWAGUCHI Hiroto
In the city we hardly see the stars because of the street lamps. But in the darkness of the mountains or near the sea we see that the stars are dense, almost as if they were making a creaking sound. On a “tropical night” the stars well up out of a crowded universe. The earth is overcrowded and so the cosmos is also overcrowded and something oozes out - it is an ambiguous sentence.
金魚 田 の 風 の 澱 み や 水 に ほ ふ
kingyoda no / kaze no yodomi ya / mizu niou
on the goldfish farm
the water smells
庭 山 邦 子 NIWAYAMA Kuniko
The goldfish facility is a pond where hundreds and thousands of goldfish are raised. The pond seems to be colored in the color of the goldfish. Perhaps the goldfish facility is immobile due to the wind and the fresh water smells unpleasant. Too many goldfish and the water stinks. The wind also seems to be stagnating. The author's critical spirit is easy to detect. You can expand your imagination and think about today's human society.
イ グ ア ナ を 掴 む が 如 し 茘 枝 切 る
iguana o / tsukamu ga gotoshi / gōya kiru
as if I would
hold an iguana
I cut the bitter melon *
原田 静 子 HARADA Shizuko
*The peel of the bitter melon is uneven and green and it feels a bit like an iguana when you hold the bitter melon in your hands and harvest it.
Iguanas are lizard reptiles, many of which are covered with spiky scales. The surface of the bitter melon is also wart-like. It is said that the feeling of grasping a bitter melon is similar to the feeling of grasping an iguana. The iguana is an animal and the bitter gourd is a plant, but both have spines and warts for self-protection. You would hesitate a moment before touching it.
And here are five more haiku - selected by Emiko Miyashita
戦 争 を 知 ら ね ど 戦 時 と 思 ふ 春
sensō o / shiranedo senji to / omou haru
I don't know any wars, but
i'm afraid it's war
松井 貴子 MATSUI Takako
村 へ 入 る 径 は 一 つ や 歯 朶 茂 る
mura e iru / michi wa hitotsu ya / shida shigeru
only one way
to enter the village
石井 洋子 ISHII Yoko
回 さ ね ば 地球 儀 古 ぶ 旱 星
mawasaneba / chikyugi furubu / hideriboshi
if it is not rotated
the globe * becomes unusable ...
dust-dry planet **
水田 博 子 MIZUTA Hiroko
*Globe on a desk
**Usually the starry sky gives a feeling of coolness on summer nights, but in times of drought the air becomes dusty and the stars are no longer clearly visible at night, perhaps only the brightest stars can be seen. It's a summer kigo.
朝 顔 や 朝 の 珈 琲 夫 と ゐ て
asagao ya / asa no kōhī / tsuma to ite
with my husband
チ ョ ウ コ ビ ー ン BEEN Choko
留守 番 の 犬 に 冷 房 つ け て お き
rusuban no / inu ni Reibō / tsukete oki
for my dog
who guards the house
I leave the air conditioning on
岡 哲夫 OKA Tetsuo