owlectomy: A squashed panda sewing a squashed panda (Default)
I was recently inspired to track down the little bit of Jacques Prevert that so charmed me in my French textbook in high school. I think we were made to memorize it, so I still have the first half of it up in my head, but I'd forgotten how it ended.

J'ai mis mon képi dans la cage
et je suis sorti avec l'oiseau sur la tête.
Alors
on ne salue plus
a demande le commandant.
Non
on ne salut plus
a répondu l'oiseau.
Ah bon
Excusez-moi je croyais qu'on saluait
a dit le commandant.
Vous êtes tout excusé tout le monde peux se tromper
a dit l'oiseau



I put my beret in the cage
And I went out with the bird on my head.
So,
We don't salute anymore
Asked the commandant.
No
We don't salute anymore
said the bird.
I see
Excuse me I thought we saluted
said the commandant.
You're quite excused, anyone can make a mistake
said the bird.
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owlectomy: A squashed panda sewing a squashed panda (Default)
179 miles.
In Tamayama-mura, just barely inside Morioka city limits--but I will post about Morioka a little later. Tamayama-mura is the birthplace of poet Ishikawa Takuboku.

Here are some scraps of attempted translations. Everything I've heard about the grammar of classical Japanese has gone in one ear and out the other, so they're wrong.

On the white beach of an isle in the eastern sea,
Soaked with tears,
I gambol with a crab.

Aiming for the wide ocean,
I left my house to weep
For seven days, or eight.

I left with a rusted pistol
To dig up sand in the dunes.

This dune of sand,
Built up in a night by a storm--
Whose grave is it?

Crawling on the sand of the dunes,
Suddenly I remember
The pain of first love.

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