Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Julia's world of poems

OK, my Austrian friend Julia is actually a very apt writer. She writes fan fiction. But her latest piece of art was a poem dedicated to the annime character Hakkai from Saiyuki, Journey to the West. A manga/anime series , the love for it we both share. The series itself is based on the famous Chinese story Monkey by Wú Chéng'ēn from the 15th century. The novel is a fictionalized account of the legends around the Buddhist monk Xuánzàng's pilgrimage to India during the Táng Dynasty in order to obtain Buddhist religious texts called sutras.

Please read it, even without knowledge of the story it is an awsome read.

The Knife in my Hands (by Julia Leodolter)

inspired by the ‘Todesfuge’ (fugue of death) by Paul Celan.

With the knife in my hands I stalk down the street.
I walk down the street and the shops and the river, I walk down.
With the knife in my hands I look them in the eye the people
I look them up look them down they shy back
I shiver and smile
I look at them look at the knife
The people don’t run they tarry their eyes so wide on my knife
They think fascination and a dessert of fear
The knife cuts the onions
I cry

The woman Kanan cuts the onions
Kanan cuts the onions The juice of the onions has no colour it stings in the eye
The juice of people is red, I look at them
They shy back
I shiver and smile With the knife in my hands I look them up look them down
They sold her I still smell the onions Kanan With the knife in her hands
The knife on the onions, she says to me chop them just fine.
My beautiful hands she says she loves them they chop the onions
Kanan holds the knife
They sold her She cries
I chop them just fine

With the knife in my hand I walk down the street
I walk down the street and the shops and the river, I go down.
I have no tears for the people
The knife in my hands cuts the onions so fine,
I cried for the onions, the juice was so red
She said chop them just fine, I walked down the streets, all those onions were mine
I chopped little pieces, the skin through to bone
I had no tears for people The knife it went through
And again and again
The knife ate their dessert of fear ate their life
No more than an onion
I chop them just fine

I see her again
With the knife in my hand
Kanan cuts the onions
I cry
The knife in my hand
Through the bars
We cry
We cut, she says the juice of the onion it stings in the eye.
I cut the onions, the humans, the demons, I cut their flesh to the bones
Kanan with the knife in her hands her skin is an onion the onions are red
The knife in her hands she lies chopped on the floor
The juice of the onions it flows The knife in her hands
I cry

I walk down the streets and the river the forest until I fall down when the rain dries the tears of the onions
In a puddle of blood I lie on the ground it’s so red The knife cut the onions it cut Kanan just so fine
Now I can die he’s come to get me I cut all the onions to hell his hair is as bloody the onions cry red as my hands I shiver

And smile

Fugue: 1 Music a contrapuntal composition 2 Psychiatry loss of awareness of one’s identity, often coupled with flight. Latin fuga ‘flight

Pictorial art from Manga (Studio Pierrot) volume 4 by Minekura Kazuya (c).

Monday, June 25, 2007


My Austrian friend Julia has sent me a poem (or rather a misunderstanding) which I turned into a Haiku (Japanese poem, which consists of 3 lines with 5,7 and 5 moras respectively).
Here it is:

maa ima benkyou suru ni iku...

(ok it's a modern one, which does not use the traditional pattern and goes 4-7-2 instead (or maybe 4-6-3)

My, I will go to learn now, ...

Julia, I feel with you (she's got the end-of-term examinations right now). And I really like it because it's so emotional (non-Japanese learner will probably not notice, but you can actually hear her sigh.

Cool, right? The big advantage of a Haiku is that you can puzzle over meaningless things for ages. That remembers me of a movie I once watched (forgot the title though). Anyway, a young Kungfu student had a really strenuous search for an old and wise hermit. And when he found him he asked 'what is the meaning of life' and the answer was: 'The head of a dead cat'. Here you go. I'm still wondering about the hidden meaning. And it has been years since I have watched this silly movie.

This one is a traditional 5-7-5 one (even if it doesn't look like it), I made it when looking out of my window whilst listening to Placebo ('English summer rain'):

あめ が ふって
なつ が きた

ame ga futte
natsu ga kita

It is raining
nothing changes
summer has come!

Julia, I wait for your haiku-answer ;)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Anime I am watching at the moment: Death Note

This is the scariest and most creepy anime I have watched so far. All people interested in Japan or Japanese language, plz give it a try:

Death Note Ep 1

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