Learn Japanese Onomatopoeia with Taro Gomi

August 4, 2011 Juju Kurihara Books, books, Culture, Vocabulary Tags: 0 Comments

This time we learn Japanese onomatopoeia with another Japanese poet, Taro Gomi (五味太郎).

The book is called Guu Guu Guu (ぐうぐうぐう), a story about a sleepy head whale.

 

 

ぐうぐうぐう     ぐうぐうぐう

 

よるがあけても    ぐうぐうぐう

 

ともだちきても    ぐうぐうぐう

 

ぼーっとなっても   ぐうぐうぐう

 

こわいのがきても   ぐうぐうぐう

 

やさしいのがきても  ぐうぐうぐう

 

こちょこちょされても ぐうぐうぐう

 

ぶるるるるるっととんできても  

           ぐうぐうぐう

 

どぼんとおちても   ぐうぐうぐう

 

ぷるぷるぶくぶくでも ぐうぐうぐう

 

これでもやっぱり   ぐうぐうぐう

 

ぽつぽつきても    ぐうぐうぐう

 

ざざざざざざざざっときても 

           ぐうぐうぐう

 

ごっつん       

 

やっと めが さめた

 

なんだか いろんな ゆめみたよ

GuuGuuGuu                GuuGuuGuu

 

Yoruga aketemo,       GuuGuuGuu

 

Tomodachi kitemo,  GuuGuuGuu

 

Boo tto nattemo,       GuuGuuGuu

 

Kowaino ga kitemo, GuuGuuGuu

 

Yasashiino ga kitemo,  

                                      GuuGuuGuu

KochoKocho saretemo,

                                      GuuGuuGuu

Bururururu tto tonde kitemo,

                                      GuuGuuGuu

 

Dobon to ochitemo, GuuGuuGuu

 

PuruPuru BukuBuku demo,

                                      GuuGuuGuu

Koredemo yappari,  GuuGuuGuu

 

PotsuPotsu kitemo,  GuuGuuGuu

 

Zazazazazazazaza tto kitemo,

                                      GuuGuuGuu

 

Gottsun

 

Yatto me ga sameta

 

Nandaka ironna yome mitayo

GuuGuuGuu                  GuuGuuGuu

 

The night ended,         GuuGuuGuu

 

A friend came,              GuuGuuGuu

 

A whistle blew, booo, GuuGuuGuu

 

A scary thing came,    GuuGuuGuu

 

A gentle one came,      GuuGuuGuu

 

Being tickled ,               GuuGuuGuu

 

A plane flew over, Brrrrrrr,

                                         GuuGuuGuu

 

A thing fell, Splash,  GuuGuuGuu

 

PuruPuru BukuBuku, GuuGuuGuu

 

After this and still,      GuuGuuGuu

 

Rain dropped,              GuuGuuGuu

 

Rain poured down,     GuuGuuGuu

 

 

Bang

 

Finally woke up

 

Phew I had many dreams

 

suuGuu Guu Guu is the same as ZZZ, a sleeping sound. There are many of those and this is one of them, rather deep sound from big animals, in this case a whale or big people. For example if it was a little kitten, the sound would be Suu Suu, a soft breathing sound. Guu Guu is also used for describing that person (or animal) is in a deep sleep, or sleeping well.

 

This whale is a real sleepy head, nothing wakes him up. Also this poem has a lot of onomatopoeias, very good.

 

kochokocho

The whale doesn´t wake up even being tickled. The sound of tickling someone is kocho kocho (こちょこちょ). We have a verb "tickle" in Japanese which is "kusuguru (くすぐる)" and usually we use them mixed like "kocho kocho kusuguru" (tickle kocho kocho). I may have explained in the last article about onomatopoeia but again, in Japanese you can use onomatopoeia as an adverb.

In extreme way is that some onomatopoeia you can use it as a verb putting "suru (する/ do)". Kocho Kocho suru, for instance.

 

dobon

Any big sound affects the whale. BruBruBruBruBru is the engine of the plane. By the way, if it was a bike, it´d be BrunBrunBrunBrun. Dbon!! Something dropped and made a big noise and yet, he didn´t wake up. Dobon is splash in Japanese but when something heavier drops in the water.

When a little thing splashes, it´s pochanpochan (ぽちゃん) or pichan (ぴちゃん).

For example,

A big bear fell into the water, dobon. – Ookii kuma ga mizu ni dobon to ochita.

A drop of water fell into the puddle, pochan. – Shizuku ga mizumatari ni pochan to ochita.

 

totoro

Potsu potsu and Zazazazaza are both the sound of the rain. Potsu Potsu is when the rain starts dropping and Zazazazaza is as you can imagine, when it rains heavily, just like one scene in Totoro.

The verb for rain is "furu (降る)" and you can use,

Ame ga zazazazaza furimasu. (The rain falls zazazazaza), or

Ame ga porsu potsu furimasu. (The rain falls potsu potsu.)

 

Still, the whale is sleeping. Oh, boy.

Then something hit him, Gottsun which wake him up finally.

gottsun

Gottsun is the sound of hitting something hard, hard vs hard.

The baby hit his head gottsun. He seem to hit the head often as I can see.

If it hits lightly, the sound changes to kottsun or kotsun, like these baby chicks.

kottsun

 

So now, the trick is the sound. Even it´s the same action, depends on the weight the sound changes heavier. Gu is stronger than su, po is weaker than za. Make sense?

 

guuguuguu

 

 

Aaaah, reading this poem makes me sleepy, too. I´ll have a little nap then.

"Guu Guu Guu", Bunka Publishing,  ISBN : 4-579-40158-1

 

 

 

 

More about Japanese language

Banzai

Onomatopoeia with Mado Michio

Sound of rain

Kazoe uta

Shiju Kata/Goju Kata

Hiragana

Katakana

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

RECENT POSTS