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A Few More Poems

令和二年二月二十日

Thus the wheel turns
Life settles into something
Else the new normal
Pinching pennies like a perv
Fear churns the empty belly

The Way Things Are: Unfunny Kyōka
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令和二年二月十六日

Anything at all
And I find myself in tears
Icicles of salt
This winter sun can not melt
No matter how clear the sky

On a cold clear day
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A Few Poems

令和二年二月七日

Unable to speak
Or even to scream, that hand
Clasped over my mouth
So suddenly it happened
There, in the bright light of day

Silenced
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令和二年二月九日

The question is asked
With well-meaning disinterest
How are you doing?
Fine, I say, just fine, hiding
The scars of my nail-pocked palms

In answer to your question
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令和二年二月十一日

I wanted to sing
But when I opened my mouth
The words disappeared
And only the bitter taste
Of salt lingered on my lips

Silent song
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Resquiat in Pacem, Daddy

By the water’s edge
The hummingbirds whispering
In the summer air
And in that moment I knew
I would not see you again

Alex Szabo
November 13th, 1937 – November 19th, 2019
Father, Aviator, Veteran, Entrepreneur

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How to Read Japanese Poetry, a book by Steven Carter

I recently got a copy of this book, How to Read Japanese Poetry (New York; Columbia University Press, 2019) ISBN 978-0231186834, and have been enjoying it thoroughly. Steven Carter is the author of several books translating Japanese poetry into English, and his Traditional Japanese Poetry: An Anthology (Stanford; Stanford University Press, 1993) ISBN 978-0804722124 is usually the first book I recommend to people who want to explore Japanese poetry. This book is a little more intimate, where Carter presents poems in a variety of styles, with translation notes and historical background. Less poems than his earlier book, but he digs down into further detail. If you are at all interested in Japanese poetry, definitely add this book to your library. https://www.amazon.com/Read-Japanese-Poem-Steven-Carter/dp/0231186835

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In process English translation of Gosenshū

Of possible interest to poetry enthusiasts: Christopher Kern, a visiting professor at Auburn University, is in the process of translating the Gosenshū (Gosen Wakashu), collected about 951 CE, which was the 2nd of the great Imperial Anthologies. He has put up a Wiki with what he has so far, including sources used and analysis of the poems. Check it out here: http://jchristopherkern.com/Wiki/Gosen_wakashu

There is a short wikipedia entry about the Gosenshū here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gosen_Wakash%C5%AB

And a brief entry concerning the 21 Imperial Anthologies here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chokusen_wakash%C5%AB#Nij%C5%ABichidaish%C5%AB