The First Signs of Spring: Poem Number 35

西安兵马俑, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Early Spring is always an exciting time to look forward to, and this is a great poem for that time of year:

JapaneseRomanizationTranslation
人はいさHito wa isaWith people, well
心も知らずKokoro mo shirazuyou can never know their hearts;
ふるさとはFurusato wabut in my old village
花ぞむかしのHana zo mukashi nothe flowers brightly bloom with
香に匂ひけるKa ni nioi keruthe scent of the days of old.
Translation by Dr Joshua Mostow

The author, Ki no Tsurayuki, is among the composers of the official anthology, the Kokin Wakashū (古今和歌集), and coined the Six Immortals of Poetry therein. He wrote the famous and fictional Tosa Diary, and is also the cousin of Ki no Tomonori who composed poem 33.

Note: Here the reference to “blossoms” is for plum blossoms in particular, called umé (梅).

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