Wednesday, 20 February 2008

浮船 Ukifune 2

In seclusion

At the quiet Ono retreat:

She was afraid to be heard

Or seen,

Even by wind from the summit

Or by a young stag,

She suppressed her voice


Neither the two ancient verses,

Nor something special

Has she in mind

When she seats herself

At the inkstone.

Yet it is in writing practice

That she passes her hours of idleness

And silent tears.

Song composed for koto by Mitsuhashi Kengyo (1693-1760)
(translated by Tsuge Gen'ichi)

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