“Heart in the Language of Japanese”



02a 500 20131217 Only Yoshy with his 色紙Dated



This picture taken with the late Dr. Masui Junji on December 17th, 2013 is the right half. He was my home doctor and one of Advisers of Myoko Powerful English Club (M-PEC); he was supporting my many activities for many years. I’m afraid the left half of his figure isn’t able to open here. After around one year, on November 13rd, 2014, he passed away at the age of ninety. Now I can guess he may have realized the rest of his life, because he disliked to be taken a picture of him. …


02b 500 20131217 増井凖治先生:色紙拝受:混沌の



During keeping company with him for over half century, I was presented his many waka-poems in which this is the last one below.





Thinking of myself living in this chaos



No matter how much I have been sweeping dirty poison away,



I have never seen cured past yet.


03 500 19741028 「日本語のこころ」cover


実は、増井先生から戴いた和歌は、なぜか口を突いて出てきにくいのです。理由を考えていました。最近、40年近く前に読んで埃がかぶっていた「日本語のこころ」 (渡部昇一、講談社)目が留まり、さっそく再読して、原因がわかりました。この句で言えば、「混沌」、「遺毒」、「過去」という「大和言葉」ではない、元来は外国語の「漢語」が多く挿入されているからだと納得しました。

To tell the truth, *curiously enough, it’s been hard for me to remember that poem at once, which has made me think the reason… Recently, I by chance caught sight of the book, “Heart of the language of Japanese” (written by Watanabe Shoichi, publisher: Kodansha) I read around four decades ago once, reading it again; yes, I understood the reason. This poem has more “kango, words of Chinese origin”, e.g. “kon-ton, *chaos”, “i-doku, remaining dirty poison” and “kako, past” which are the words from abroad than “yamato-kotoba, original Japanese words”.

*curiously [kjˈʊ(ə)riəsli](ad) 奇妙にも  *chaos [kéɪɑs]:無秩序、混乱


04 500 20020125 齋藤史:「記憶の茂み」cover



The book of “Fumi Saito In *Thickets of Memory” (Translated by James Kirkup published by Miwa-shoten) are full of rather difficult waka-poems for me who has no experience of such an *oppressive atmosphere in time of war; however he presented it to me in 2007 when I started the activity of Myoko Powerful English Club (MPEC). He asked me with a peaceful smile, while he was a little introducing it to me, “If you were the translator, how do you do her poems?” Needless to say, he did as his encouragement to me so that I had better brush up my command of English including Japanese heavy and dark histories, I believe. But he is not HERE yet. I wish I could talk about this book with Dr. Masui!

*thicket [θíkɪt]:藪(やぶ)、雑木林  *oppressive [əprésɪv](a) 過酷な、圧政的な、重苦しい




「大和言葉」だけの和歌は、序中の、A: 1954年の歌会始に招かれ天皇と二言三言語った思い出を詠んだ句や、B: 孫を思って詠んだ句など、比較的少ないのです。Cのように、圧倒的に多漢語交じりの彼女の句は、苦悩が絡まっていて、胸が締め付けられるのです。

There’re really fewer waka-poems made of all “yamato-kotoba”, e.g. A: the impression of her precious memory of taking with Showa Emperor at Enyu-kai, Imperial Garden Party held in 1954; she was invited there, B: a poem about her lovely grandchild, etc. The rest ones of all, like C, have much more kango-words, which tells us her deep *distress. I feel some pain while reading them.

*distress [dɪstrés]:苦悩、悲痛、悲嘆



A: 「おかしな男です」といふほかはなし天皇が和やか父の名を言いませリ

<Translation by James Kirkup>


What could I answer?

There was nothing I could say

But: “Peculiar man”.

The Emperor smilingly

Mentioning my father’s name.




B: 野の昏れてひよこ迷子になる繪本あまりかなしくて孫に送らず

<Translation by James Kirkup>


A picture book tells

The sory of a chick that

Got lost in a field

At dusk. It made me so sad,

I kept it from my grandchild.



C: 孤獨なる野鳥ねむれり背の上に未明の雪のそそぎたるまま

Solitary wild

Bird keeps sleeping, on its back

Still a sprinkling of snowflakes that had fallen in

The grey light of early morn.





I a little understand that Dr. Masui who was taking care of his many dying patients must have sympathized with Ms. Sato Fumi’s aka-poems, she was fighting against those days full of dark clouds in the war-time.


05 500 20110929初版:「四葉のクローバー」cover



I’ve been healed by a poet, Ms. Yamashita Yoshie’s poems, because hers are full of pure and fresh ways of expressions. They say that all of us have got the four elements of being inevitable in human life (birth, aging, sickness, and death)I respect anyone who has such a special ability as can *sublime his/her works toward literature.

*sublime [səblάɪm](vt) 高める、昇華する




怖いもの知らずの小生、大和言葉で今の心境を和歌に故・増井先生、故・ 先生、門脇長子先生、山下佳恵先生国語の専門家先生たちに叱られそうですが、上達を待っていたらお迎えが来ますので一句。

Not fearful of criticism, I’ve tried making a waka-poem with my present feeling full with yamato-language. … Such my respected Japanese language teachers as the late Mr. Masui, the late Mr. Seki Osamu, Ms. Kadowaki Choko, Ms. Yamashita Yoshie, etc. in my remaining life.







Removing snow-lies

Moon light says

“You need not do.”

The late pals’ smiles

Vanishing as soon as appears







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These exterior pictures attached here are permitted to public for reuse.


This poor translation into English is for both brushing up Yoshy’s proficiency and telling updates to my foreign friends. Yoshy’s several foreign friends are always checking this blog; wrong expressions found, an article of “Correction” has been uploaded here.

英文中、英検2級レベル以上の語彙や表現には、* (星印)で注釈をつけています。

In this blog, Yoshy adds * (asterisk) at the vocabulary and expressions whose level are Eiken 2nd and over, and writes its explanation.