Metaphorical Summer by Anzai Hitoshi (暗喩の夏 / 安西均)

While looking down to pick up a bean
the world had changed in an instant

Two young girls
were looking out at the factories from a crowded train
It was the last summer of the war
They took their lunches from their bags
and a bean fell on the floor
Had they switched lunchboxes that day?
The girls crouched down
searching for the bean
and when they looked up they saw
“the passengers, the train, and everything out the window” scorched by flame
“Only two girls were uninjured”
writes one woman who went to school in Hiroshima

For us, ‘life’
is always a ‘metaphor’
a flash of light off by an instant
If they can laugh
down in hell
they must find this very funny

* * *

うつむいて煎豆(いりまめ)をひろつてゐるすきに
世界が一瞬にして變わることがあるのだ

わかい娘ふたりが
満員電車で工場に向かつてゐた
戦争の最後の夏だつた
雑嚢(ざつのう)に入れておいた罐(かん)から
煎豆が床にこぼれてしまつた
その日の辨當(べんとう)代りだつたのだらうか
娘たちは腰をかがめて
豆を探しつづけたさうだが
やがて頭をもたげたとき見たのは
《乗客も電車も窓外の風景も》焼けただれ
《無傷なのは二人だけだつた》といふのだ
廣島で女學生だつたひとが書いてゐる

われらが〈生〉にとつて
つねに〈暗喩〉といふものは
一瞬だけずれる閃光に似てゐるが
もし地獄とやらにも
微笑があるとするならば
このやうなをかしさに違いない

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s