(The increasingly less) Daily senryu thread

I just noticed the note…

I don’t think どの彼の時も can be interpreted as quoted above, which connects どの with 時 rather than reading it as [どの彼]の[時]. (Not to mention that cooking the same dish for the boyfriend every time they meet would put a quick end to the relationship :wink:) In other words, it can be interpreted only as “[Time] with [any boyfriend]” the way it is written.

EDIT: As @Rrwrex pointed out in the next post, どの時 is incorrect in this instance. To use どの requires replacing 時 with たび (or something else?) as in the corrected version below.
with the same boyfriend, but different times would be 彼とどの時も最初はこの料理 彼とどのたびも最初はこの料理 . In other words, the word that attaches to どの is what it modifies as a nominal adjective.
(ADDITIONAL NOTE: どの時 is a valid combination as googling for it brings up a few results - this one, for instance. But, it is not a widely used term.)

At least, that’s how I see どの functioning but, as always, caveat emptor and all that… :upside_down_face:

3 Likes

I realize I’m quite remiss publishing the next poem.

Tomorrow looks a bit more sane. I promise to get it out in the morning.

I’ve flip-flopped on it at least twice. Time to phone-a-friend (or wife/daughter).

To be clear, I think the two possibilities are

  • どの(かれ)

and

  • どの◯, where the circle gets filled with a single noun and 彼の時 in it’s entirety is (somehow) considered a single compound noun (“boyfriend-time”).

I don’t think 「どの(とき)」 is a possibility at all.

1 Like

Thursday, October 13, 2022


Previous senryu

  1. 趣味日舞 詳しくきけば盆踊り
    しゅみにちぶ・くわしくきけば・ぼんおどり
    Ask the details: / “traditional dance” is / bon odori

Notes:

  • This is about someone putting on airs about their “traditional Japanese dance” hobby (日本(にほん)舞踊(ぶよう)). Bon odori is something that people of all ages and skill levels participate in annually, but inevitably there are some that take it much more seriously than others.

  • To be fair, there is quite a bit of contention about my interpretation (where I assume “is bon odori” or 「盆踊り」) but I’m pretty confident that’s what this senryu means, even thought the poem form leaves out the final だ.

Current senryu challenge

Volume: Salaryman

  1. 「空気読め!!」 それより部下の 気持ち読め!!

That quoted bit had to have come from the similar English expression! (“Read the room!”)


Remember to please use the spoiler tag with your translation attempts! Also, please include the reading in kana with your submission.

Everyone is encouraged to participate, no matter your level! Questions and comments are as valued as translation submissions.

Please try not to be disappointed if your translation isn’t selected or if you disagree with the daily choice: the judge isn’t terribly consistent with his grading (and has awful taste!).
Online tools like dictionaries, sentence databases, and even AI translation engines are fair game and can be extremely helpful. Yomichan is particularly handy if you use the Chrome or Firefox browser. The 語源(ごげん)由来(ゆらい)辞典(じてん) is also an excellent resource for researching the etymology of various words and expressions.

Here are the links to the 356 Japanese originals (spoiler free) and to the the spreadsheet with all the upcoming senryu as well as the translations to date.

2 Likes

I dunno, I think the two idioms are more likely to be parallel developments. If you google you can find people saying the nuances don’t entirely line up.

3 Likes

「空気読め!!」 それより部下の 気持ち読め!!

「くうきよめ!!」・それよりぶかの・ きもちよめ!!

4-5-4
“You should read the
room!” Boss, better still,
read your staff’s minds!

  • Sounds like the sarcastic retort of サラリマン for getting blamed for something the the boss overlooked. Not unusual in the corporate world anywhere, where ineffective bosses resort to “You should have known better!” when things go south on an initiative or meeting. The implication here is that the entire staff thinks that their boss is the missing link reincarnate.
3 Likes

Saturday, October 15, 2022


Previous senryu

  1. 「空気読め!!」 それより部下の 気持ち読め!!
    「くうきよめ!!」・それよりぶかの・ きもちよめ!!
    “You should read the / room!” Boss, better still, / read your staff’s minds!

I’m constantly fascinated at the similarity between many expressions in Japanese and English. Sometimes they develop independently but end up expressing similar ideas in similar ways. Other times, of course, they’re introduced from one language to the other (where they might morph in odd ways).

Current senryu challenge

Volume: Universal truths

  1. 言葉にて傷つき言葉で立ち直る

Hmm. This one again has easy words, but I need to ponder to figure out the intended meaning.

The literal meaning seems to be that “words of your own let you recover from hurtful words” but I’m wondering if I’m missing some nuance of 立ち直る.


Remember to please use the spoiler tag with your translation attempts! Also, please include the reading in kana with your submission.

Everyone is encouraged to participate, no matter your level! Questions and comments are as valued as translation submissions.

Please try not to be disappointed if your translation isn’t selected or if you disagree with the daily choice: the judge isn’t terribly consistent with his grading (and has awful taste!).
Online tools like dictionaries, sentence databases, and even AI translation engines are fair game and can be extremely helpful. Yomichan is particularly handy if you use the Chrome or Firefox browser. The 語源(ごげん)由来(ゆらい)辞典(じてん) is also an excellent resource for researching the etymology of various words and expressions.

Here are the links to the 356 Japanese originals (spoiler free) and to the the spreadsheet with all the upcoming senryu as well as the translations to date.

2 Likes

ことばにて きずつきことばで 立ち直る

Hurt by words
Healed by words

I assume the weird にて instead of で is here just so that the senryuu can fit into 5-8-5 and does’t convey any additional nuance. No subject as usual, but I feel that this senryuu is supposed to be vague about who got hurt/recover or by the words of who, so passive probably works.

5 Likes

言葉にて傷つき言葉で立ち直る

ことばにて・きずつきことばで・たちなぉる

2-3-2
Words do
hurt. Yet, they
heal, too.

It means the same as で、によって、に、…. にて is used in written expressions (formal correspondence, texts, etc), literary works, and ceremonies as explained at the bottom of the above link.

3 Likes

Yeah, but is there any reason except syllable count not to use the same thing in both halves of the parallel construction?

5 Likes

To give deeper nuance about where the words came from that hurt and where the words came from that healed.

Its about a man who read a formal letter about how is pants are ugly and his wife told him that she thinks they actually looked good on him.

4 Likes

:laughing: That scenario explains the senryu better than any translation can.

But, as @pm215 rightly noted, the two particles are probably used to conveniently fill the 音 requirements.

I, on the other hand, was merely responding much too seriously to @Arzar33 's comment about “the weird にて” with an overly academic explanation to say that it is not such a weird particle and is in daily use. :wink:

3 Likes

I may hold out on picking a winner until someone comes up with a 4-5-4 involving ugly pants and a formal letter.

1 Like

Monday, October 17, 2022


Previous senryu

  1. 言葉にて傷つき言葉で立ち直る
    ことばにて・きずつきことばで・たちなぉる
    Words do / hurt. Yet, they / heal, too.

Ultra short 2-3-2 but it works. I think we all agree that the most accurate interpretation involves a response to a formal letter about ugly pants, but the response is left to the reader’s imagination.

As discussed, にて is basically a literary or more formal form of で。

Current senryu challenge

Volume: Life in one page

  1. ああ今日のパリは雨かと言ってみた

Well, kanji shouldn’t be the difficult part.


Remember to please use the spoiler tag with your translation attempts! Also, please include the reading in kana with your submission.

Everyone is encouraged to participate, no matter your level! Questions and comments are as valued as translation submissions.

Please try not to be disappointed if your translation isn’t selected or if you disagree with the daily choice: the judge isn’t terribly consistent with his grading (and has awful taste!).
Online tools like dictionaries, sentence databases, and even AI translation engines are fair game and can be extremely helpful. Yomichan is particularly handy if you use the Chrome or Firefox browser. The 語源(ごげん)由来(ゆらい)辞典(じてん) is also an excellent resource for researching the etymology of various words and expressions.

Here are the links to the 356 Japanese originals (spoiler free) and to the the spreadsheet with all the upcoming senryu as well as the translations to date.

I tried a google search to see if it was a quote or allusion to something, but of course it’s impossible to search for because google thinks I really want to know the weather in Paris right now!

So maybe the senryu author is speaking to his Alexa ? :slight_smile:

2 Likes

My best guesses:

  • It’s a complaint about useless and irrelevant information in the daily paper (or whatever).

  • The author’s spouse is trying to force Paris into the conversation (perhaps trying to indirectly suggest a vacation)

I’m not totally satisfied with either.

3 Likes

ああきょうのパリはあめかといってみた

“ah, it’s raining
today in paris?”
i tried to say

I came up with literally six different variations on translations for this one :sweat_smile:. I wondered if maybe the 今日の lent an important nuance to it, like maybe it’s not “today in Paris” but “today’s Paris”, like “ah, Paris is rainy these days?” instead of specifying today’s weather, but that didn’t really help me get any further with interpreting it.

As far as interpretations go, I thought of a couple possibilities, but none of them really stood out as “yes, this is the one!”. Besides what has already been suggested, I think it could be the author trying and struggling to come up with a compelling subject to talk about, so they default to talking about the weather, haha. Maybe Paris was selected for a slightly more exotic topic than just the local weather.

My other thought was the author trying to tell someone else that it’s raining in Paris (so therefore it isn’t so bad being in Japan right now).

5 Likes

Dunno if we’re gonna find an objectively correct interpretation for this one…

Another possibility: Maybe it’s just a conversation gambit? Desperation to avoid an awkward silence?

2 Likes

ああ今日のパリは雨かと言ってみた

ああきょうの・パリはあめかと・いってみた

5–7-5
“Is it rain today
in Paris?” I tried, with a
statement on weather …

  • Wanted to end the second line with,
    I ventured with a
    but, the damn syllable count won’t allow it!
  • Senryu seems to be poking fun at the weather talk that’s common at the beginning of Japanese conversations. The Brits would see the humor, if only Paris is replaced with Pyongyang, since it’d additionally make a nostalgic and acerbic dig at the old colonial ways. (No offense meant to my Brit comrades here. Weather is your favorite topic, narrowly beating “the best route to get somewhere/anywhere,” your second favorite topic.) :wink:
2 Likes

Another shot at guessing the meaning…

I think Paris has une très chic prestigious aura in Japanese culture (or had? those senryuu are 20 years old after all), so I wonder if the author tried to make themselves look like a cool mysterious おしゃれ person that somehow has a connection with Paris and can drop this kind of knowledge.

4 Likes

Since this senryu is open to so many interpretations, I asked one of the teachers at the 日本語学院 that I’m attending to give her take on the senryu - interestingly, it wasn’t clear even for her.

Anyway, here’s her take on it…

It seems that the quote is not addressed to anyone in particular. The expression「ああ今日のパリは雨か」would not be used in conversation (it’d be more like, 「ああ今日のパリは雨だね・ですね」) and so it’s a response to something that he/she is witnessing by themselves on TV/radio/whatever. Maybe it’s just something the writer says to lessen the loneliness, which is kinda sad.Alternately, he/she is making a snide remark at the fact that the weather in Paris is being delivered to them, as if it is relevant to the writer’s life. (I can relate to that, as I’ve mumbled a “Yeah, right. Ì sooo need your <product/service>!” when the commercials on YouTube overwhelm.

The fact that it proved to be difficult for even native Japanese is a small measure of consolation.:wink:

4 Likes