Pathway (道程) by Tate Takako (タテタカコ)

When walking the path alone
and feeling lonely
all warm creatures
reach out for one another

If desire is human nature
then even though violent waves are in our way
we will see somewhere in the distance
joy, light, life

If a chance encounter can change your life
I’ll keep waiting for someone I’ve never seen
because the waters that flow through my body
will not lie to me

If all that we can see
were to disappear completely
their echoes would remain in our hearts
Please tell me
your honest feelings

Right now if you’re sad, let your tears flow
Right now if you’re happy, laugh out loud

独りで歩く道程が
寂しいものだと感じたとき
ぬくもりをもつ生きものたちは
互いに手をとりはじめる

望みが人を性なら
行く手には荒波が来ようとも
眼差しを遠くまでもつことが
喜び 光 生きること

出逢いが人を変えるのなら
まだ見ぬあなたを待ちましょう
身体を流れる水たちは
自分に嘘をつけないから

目に見えるものはいずれ
消え失せても
心に響くものは残っていく
わけてください
あなたの気持ちを

今悲しいのなら ここで涙を流し
今嬉しいのなら 笑ってしまおう

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Haiku by Ikeda Sumiko (池田澄子)

my favorite thing in life
when the start of winter
feels like spring

生きるの大好き冬のはじめが春に似て

snake berry
I always forget to look
at the leaves

蛇苺いつも葉っぱを見忘れる

the coming of spring
has come again
crocodile jaw

また春が来たことは来た鰐の顎

no less significant
than I am
rainy season mushrooms

わたくしに劣るものなく梅雨きのこ

everyone
stones on the ice
of the lake

ひとびとよ池の氷の上に石

hiding the sun
sunlightsunsunflower

日輪を隠す日光日日草

spring wind
words become sound
and disappear

春風や言葉が声になり消ゆる

Haiku by Ikeda Sumiko (池田澄子)

little Taku’s
first calligraphy this year
a giant oval

拓チャンの書初め大いなる楕円

fig trees
gods or buddha
never saw them

無花果や神も仏も見たことなし

moonlit pillar
if you want to bloom
be my guest

月の夜の柱よ咲きたいならどうぞ

under cherry blossoms
I do not wait to see
if they fall

桜の下散るか散るまで待てません

she is prettier
than I am
the tubifex worm

私より彼女が綺麗糸みみず

All poems originally appeared in Japanese at the Gendai Haiku Association Database (http://www.haiku-data.jp/).

Tanka by Okada Miyuki (岡田美幸)

They ran away
from a tower
called school
Shortcut
Rapunzels

学校という名の塔から逃げ出したショートカットのラプンツェルたち

Wanting to be a genius
the science kid
built a robot
and named it
after his mother

天才になりたい理系の少年がロボット作り母の名つけた

Melon bread
does not contain
melon juice
Reading a novel
I can’t shed tears

メロンパンメロン果汁は含まない小説読んで涙できない

NOTE: These poems originally appeared in the Japanese literary anthology Musica, vol. 2 (2015).