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Discussion in '日本語 (Japanese)' started by Ymmu M'Kursa, Sep 11, 2013.

  1. Ymmu M'Kursa New Member

    I'm trying to write a parody of haiku.
    I know this is a very poor effort. So that why I'm here and asking for help.
    In english it has to be like that:
    "Peony [and] chrisanthemum
    Tasteless and sour
    I won't live to see winter"
    I'd like to use this phrase "此の次の御冬迄生きられるか何うか" for my needs but failed. :(
  2. Tonky Senior Member


    This is very difficult, but how about using either of the following two? (both 7 morae)
    (winter does not wait for me.)
    (shall die before winter.)

    I do not understand what you mean or what you want to implicate by "tasteless and sour". 
    淡味 means "light taste", not strong taste, but I do not think we would translate it as tasteless.
    (For some reason, this line reminds me of beer!)

    Could you explain the background of your haiku? Why those flowers in particular and what are those tastes presenting?
    I probably cannot help much, but might be able to give some tips... maybe.
    (牡丹 is usually used for early summer, unless it is 冬牡丹 or 寒牡丹, and 菊 is usually autumn. I cannot picture the scene with them both.)

    For your reference, here is a famous Tanka :)
    願わくば、花の下にて春死なむ その如月の望月の頃 
  3. Ymmu M'Kursa New Member

    Many people (especially simple people in far western parts of Russia) do not know difference between japanese and chinese.
    So 菊 stands for the first one and 牡丹 does for the latter. Actually as we know the difference is as greate as between tasteless chalk and sour cheese.
    There is a kind of sayig in russian: Don't confuse presnoye [noun meaning something greatly lacking of taste, as a rule not salty at all] with kisloye [something or anything having sour taste] that means the same as english "Know the difference between chalk and cheese" does.
    Although I'd want to write a haiku (or senryu) in perfect japanese :) I am to write it for russian people, so using russian realia is preferable, unless it could be replaced with a true japanese saying on the contrary.
    There is another reason why the flowers and chinese-japanese relationship involved in the verse. The haiku is being composed by a summer time in garden by a fictional chinese man sentenced by ruler to death (I write a story about that man).
    By the way there's a joke as well in Russia, kind of black humour:
    "Summer time. Hospital. Morning ward round by hospital administrator. He comes in a ward where a christmas tree is mounted, with candles and gift boxes under it. Patients sing holiday songs, drink punch, dance and enjoy the party in a way each one can do.
    - What a hell is going on?! - the administrator cries to a doctor who is in charge of the ward. The doctor answers:
    - Why do you mind it? All these people won't live to see winter."
    That's the backgroud.
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2013
  4. Tonky Senior Member

    Ahh, I see. Then, the equivalent Japanese expression would be 月とスッポン/the moon and a turtle. (both round)
    So, if you replace one of them with 月とスッポン, then the other would be self-explainable too as the same comparison.
    We also have 提灯(ちょうちん)と釣鐘(つりがね), 駿河(するが)の富士’(ふじ)と一里塚(いちりづか), but 月とスッポン/鼈 is the most famous and simple. One issue would be... 月 is something beautiful while the turtle is not (though tasty) and the comparison may offend one side.

    If the comparison of those two flowers makes sense in your own tongue, then it should be fine, I guess. (I now understand why you picked 菊 for Japanese, but it represents the Japanese royal family rather than the country itself. We usually use 桜 but it is not official. As for 牡丹, yes, I now got it, but I think we usually choose 梅 to represent China, in poetry. China has not officially decided to choose their national flower either, so if 牡丹 represents China in your country, that should be good.)

    So, whether you choose 菊と牡丹 or 桜と梅, I'd recommend you to add "と" between the two words, to show it is the comparison.

    After reading your explanation, maybe the last line can be something like
    冬思ふ/ふゆおもう/Thinking of winter (which could mean that he is going to miss it)
    冬待たむ/ふゆまたん/I'll be waiting for winter
    Neither has the character "死", but since the readers understand the background without the word, it should not be an issue.
  5. Ymmu M'Kursa New Member

    Thank you! You did a great job. It's a precious present for me.

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