Japanese Poets – Shuntarou Tanigawa

May 21, 2011 Juju Kurihara 0 Comments
朝のリレー Asa no Riree Morning relay race













Kamchatka no wakamono ga

kirin no yume wo miteiru toki

Mexico no musume wa

asamoya no nakade bus wo matteiru

New York no shoujo ga

hohoemi nagara negaeri wo utsutoki

Rome no shounen wa

chutou wo someru asahi ni wink suru

kono chikyuu dewa

itsumo dokoka de asa ga hajimatteiru

When a young boy in Kamchatka

is dreaming about firaffes,

A young Mexican girl

is waiting for the bus in the morning haze

When a little girl in New York

is turning over in her bed smiling,

A Roman boy

winks at the morning sun colouring the capitals

In this Earth,

always in somewhere, the morning starts


This is a Shuntarou Tanizaki (谷崎俊太郎)´s poem which used to be a poem most of the Japanese school children would learn at school. He is one of the most well-known poet in Japan. One coffee company used his poem, Morning relay race for their ad while ago and became one of my favorites. It was a well made.

morning relay book

I´m not a big poetry reader even that there are a few Japanese poets I read and I like.  Shuntarou Tanizaki is one of them. I´ve found his poems are quite raw and therefore, I can feel his confusion, pain and warmth.

This Morning relay race makes you feel that the world is connected and as we live, we keep handing a baton to each other. Thinking like that as a kid, suddenly the earth became so close and so familiar.

Now I shall withdraw and as I put my head on the pillow, I´ll think of the morning sun starts shining somewhere the other side of the world.

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