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100 Poems from the Japanese por Kenneth…
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100 Poems from the Japanese (original 1955; edição 1955)

por Kenneth Rexroth (Tradutor)

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426545,077 (3.88)7
The poems are drawn chiefly from the traditional Manyoshu, Kokinshu and Hyakunin Isshu collections, but there are also examplaes of haiku and other later forms. The sound of the Japanese texts i reproduced in Romaji script and the names of the poets in the calligraphy of Ukai Uchiyama. The translator's introduction gives us basic background on the history and nature of Japanese poetry, which is supplemented by notes on the individual poets and an extensive bibliography.… (mais)
Membro:EugenioNegro
Título:100 Poems from the Japanese
Autores:Kenneth Rexroth (Tradutor)
Informação:New Directions (1955), Edition: First Edition, 140 pages
Colecções:A sua biblioteca
Avaliação:*****
Etiquetas:Nenhum(a)

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One Hundred Poems from the Japanese por Kenneth Rexroth (1955)

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Mostrando 5 de 5
This was a present from a friend when I was taking Japanese lessons. Beautiful little book. ( )
  Chica3000 | Dec 11, 2020 |
An ideal introduction to classical Japanese poetry, if my own experience is anything to go by. Rexroth's introductory essay won me over pretty easily by pointing out that the differences between Japanese and 'Western' poetry aren't all that great (though he wasted some of my good will by then describing Japanese poetry as "purer, more essentially poetic... less distracted by non-poetic considerations," which is like saying that my kitchen table is less distracted by non-table considerations than your picnic bench.

More importantly, the essay explains the forms, puts them in historical context, deals with some of the problems a reader is likely to encounter (not many unless you really need to know every implication of every word).

Rexroth's selection is very good: even if, like me, you grow easily bored by love poetry, you'll soon find something more to your taste.

I go out of the darkness
Onto a road of darkness
Lit only by the far off
Moon on the edge of the mountains (Izumi Shikibu)

Or,

As certain as color
Passes from the petal,
Irrevocable as flesh,
The gazing eye falls through the world. (Ono No Komachi)

Or even a love poem metallic enough for my pallet:

I dreamed I held
A sword against my flesh.
What does it mean?
It means I shall see you soon. (Lady Kasa)

And then there are the mini biographies at the end of the text, which are informative and sometimes helpful for understanding the poems; the lovely production of the book itself; and the very odd idea of including representations of Japanese pronunciation, which I suspect doesn't really help anyone, but is still charming. Lady's Kasa's poem supposedly runs:

Tsurugi tachi
Mi ni tori sou to
Ime ni mitsu
Nani no satoshi zomo
Kimi ni awamu tame

Now for anyone who doesn't know Japanese, and possibly even for people who do, that is *truly* the essence of poetry, unalloyed by extra-poetical considerations like, you know. Meaning.

So, to state the obvious, I have no idea how well Rexroth has translated these poems. But I do know that his versions are readable and coherent.

The white chrysanthemum
Is disguised by the first frost.
If I wanted to pick one
I could find it only by chance. (Oshikochi No Mitsune) ( )
  stillatim | Oct 23, 2020 |
A nice collection of poems translated by Kenneth Rexroth at the time the Beat movement in San Francisco was emerging; the same year, 1955, saw him MC’ing famous poetry readings of Allen Ginsberg, Gary Snyder, and others. His introduction concentrates a bit too much on the process of translation and not enough on the poets themselves – e.g. who were these people? – but Rexroth does a good job nonetheless, both in his selection of poems and in the simplicity with which he translates them, which (I believe) helps preserve some of their subtlety.

My favorites:

On anxiety, from the monk Shun-E:
All during a night
Of anxiety I wait.
At last the dawn comes
Through the cracks of the shutters,
Heartless as night.

On dreams, from Fujiwara No Toshiyuki:
In the Bay of Sumi
The waves crowd on the beach.
Even in the night
By the corridor of dreams,
I come to you secretly.

On love’s uncertainty, from Lady Horikawa:
Will he always love me?
I cannot read his heart.
This morning my thoughts
Are as disordered
As my black hair.

On love which passes, from Yakamochi:
We were together
Only a little while,
And we believed our love
Would last a thousand years.

On memory, from Akahito:
The mists rise over
The still pools at Asuka.
Memory does not
Pass away so easily.

On night, from an anonymous poet:
The cicada sings
In the rotten willow.
Antares, the fire star,
Rolls in the west.

On old age, from Hitomaro:
A strange old man
Stops me,
Looking out of my deep mirror.

On pain, from Oe No Chisato:
As I watch the moon
Shining on pain’s myriad paths,
I know I am not
Alone involved in Autumn.

On parting, from Hitomaro:
In the Autumn mountains
The colored leaves are falling.
If I could hold them back,
I could still see her. ( )
1 vote gbill | Dec 3, 2011 |
I borrowed this from the library during National Poetry Month (April) when I realized I hadn't familiarized myself tankas in a long while. A tanka is one of the short poetry forms (31 syllables, broken in to five 5-7-5-5-5 syllable lines) that the Japanese poets made famous. There's also so haiku, and longer poems as well. All the poems have the original Japanese and English translation side by side.These poems are meant to be simple little caps to the previous evening, written the morning after. I loved the simplicity in the topics, and the relatability of the poetry even after surviving hundreds of years. ( )
  pocketmermaid | Jun 7, 2010 |
This is a selection of classic Japanese poetry in translation (the original Japanese is there too). The poems, mostly tanka/waka, are not my favorite selection -- mostly court poetry without a lot of the intensity nor the imagery common in later Japanese haiku and tanka. Nevertheless, the translations seem fairly good and the poems are all quite accessible. ( )
1 vote tombrinck | May 13, 2006 |
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The poems are drawn chiefly from the traditional Manyoshu, Kokinshu and Hyakunin Isshu collections, but there are also examplaes of haiku and other later forms. The sound of the Japanese texts i reproduced in Romaji script and the names of the poets in the calligraphy of Ukai Uchiyama. The translator's introduction gives us basic background on the history and nature of Japanese poetry, which is supplemented by notes on the individual poets and an extensive bibliography.

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