by the bay and by the lake

My husband and I like Kobe, and occasionally we stroll in the town and the sea side.

The 3,911m Akashi kaikyo(strait) bridge constructed 1988~1998

This time we took a short trip on a cruise ship to Akashi Strait, taking one hour and forty minutes.

Leaving the shore, the sea horizon appeared with gently curve, and I was dazzled by the twinkling sunlight on the almost flat sea.


Some old movies are showing on TV repeatedly, and sometimes I can notice about what I did not do when I saw them before.

When I saw 1960 film directed by René Clément"Plein Soleil"「太陽がいっぱい」 about one year ago, I was surprised the details contained in the scenes.

For example, when Tom could not put up with Phillip's consecutive insult and killed him on a ship, he ate heartily baguette bread just after his commitment of murder.
And just after Tom killed another man who had a suspicion of him, he digs into a large baked chicken(poulet rôti), as if his big appetite shows his strong libido.

In the final scene, a voice "Telefono"( telephone) is travelling far, conveying the remark of the police.
The word is a foreign language for Tom, and it might be heard by him as a voice from unknown world.
It was just after Tom began to have his confidence about his love for Marge who used to be a lover of Phillip, and murmured, " Plein soleil", looking up at the sky.

Theme Music by Nino Rota & Nini Rosso is here.

a training ship, kaiwo maru
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After one week later we visited Lake Biwa in Ohtu city in Shiga prefecture, taking one hour drive, with my dog, Daisy.

It was a little cloudy and was not bad to take a walk along the lake.

Ohtu city is twin town with Wurzburg.

Open tables are available for customers with dogs

in the restaurant that serves German cuisine.

Lake Biwa reminds me of a tanka poem by Yuko Kawano (河野 裕子1946~2010).


It's Ōmi ( Shiga prefecture)

that embraces the fullness

of the still water,

 A somber vessel

or a body Yuko Kawano
Some tanka poet associated the word " Ōmi as a vessel" to a woman's body, and this interpretation became mainstream of the appreciation of this tanka poem.
Works always start to walk independently regardless of the intention of writers.

Yuko Kawano and her husband Kazuhiro Nagata(永田 和宏)started to preside over a tanka association, Tou(搭)that literally means Tower, which has produced excellent tanka poets one after another.

I'm not belong to the association, though I had some opportunities to listen to her discourse.

Just shortly after her taking operation for her cancer about ten years ago, she said "It's so far from the station that I hurried to come here a lot," waving a Japanese fan in her face in a manner of like a girl, at the beginning of her discourse.

In another occasion she spoke out after a panel discussion that it was so exciting that she had a comfortable tiredness, and she would like to have heard more opinions even though it would end up to be a dispute.

Her honest attitude and strait forward speaking were always impressionable.

Almost one year has passed since she passed away of a breast cancer recurrence.


the bird-shaped kite

seems the ride on the wind----

it becomes a dot

high in the sky,

ceasing to move Yuko Kawano (translated by Amelia Fielden)


pol pot...

あけがたは耳さむく聴く雨だれのポルポトといふ名を持つをとこ   大辻 隆弘(1960~)

Arousing, my ears caught bleakly

sound of falling drops


...It's the name of a man,

Pol Pot Takahiro Ohtsuji

In this tanka poem the writer overlays an image on another image effectively by an onomatopoeia,pol pot, from drops to a name.

Pol Pot(1925~1998) is a notorious Cambodian prime minister(1976~1997), as it well known.
In genre of tanka, they can sing about almost all events, landscapes, dairy matters and social ones.

In the case of social matters it is difficult to describe something more than mouthing slogans, because writers usually get information through media.

my neighbour's magnolia
taken in early spring

未だ白き紫木蓮の莟の指せる宙(そら) 安否不明者二万人近し 

Whity buds of purple magnolia

pointing up and staring at nothing,

Nearly 20,000 victims

are left up in the air

in northen Japan haricot

Although I don't know if this one came into effect well or not, I could not help making this about aftermath of 3.11 disaster by earthquake and Tsunami, around one month later.

About four months have passed since it occurred, there are still more than 22,000 dead and unexplained disappearances.

倒されて運ばるるとき天心をはじめて見たるレーニンの像 大塚 寅彦(1961~)

Being fallen

and being carried on

It saw the centre of sphere

for the first time,

The statue of Lenin Torahiko Ohtsuka

Vladimir Lenin was a Marxist in Soviet, and this tanka is written in a sort of sarcastic way for the famous parson and the statue.

I suppose that many readers would bring up the image of Saddam Hussein's statue that was pulled down in 2003.

As for a statue I also remembered the story " Happy Prince"by Oscar Wilde. It is written with sarcastic point of view, in a different way. (plot is here)

The rainy season around this area was over only this week.


Heaven above, earth below

                          水原 紫苑(1959~)

I'm wiping the spilt milk

in absolute silence

in solitude

May flowers fill the fields

of heaven above and earth below Shion Mizuhara

This tanka poem was very difficult for me to understand for long time.

However, when I thought of 「こぼれたるミルク」(spilt milk) in English, I came to correlate it with the saying "It is no use crying over spilt milk."

Then, I understood that she might regret something in the former lines.

She mentions tremendously broad world as her ideal in the latter lines that make readers imagine the words by Buddha, "Heaven above, earth below, only I am holy."

(花野 flower field might be cherry blossom fields according to traditional interpretation, though I dare to have translated it as fields full of flowers here.)

The former part and the latter one in a verse is well balanced in general, and if this tanka wouldn't be an exceptional, her regret must be profoundly important matter that is related to her fundamental issue.

As far as I can imagine, love is one of the most important and fundamental matters for human beings, though love has its variety from self-centred one to agape.

And, it is quite difficult that we conquer and sublime the sense of possessions when we concern with love, I think.

                                    内藤 明(1954~)

I hoard one thing

that I had not have

from the very beginning,

as if I have lost it

the very thing   Akira Naitoh