Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Hanaya No Musume - "I Just fell in little love with you" (Translation of the post on 22nd April 2011)


Continued from the last post.

There is a phrase in the lyrics of 'Hanaya No Musume' that "for killing time, I fell in little love with a young lady at the florist's.".  It sounds quite unique and Fujifabric-like.

Today, let's take a look at the word, 'love' in Japanese language.
There are two words referring to 'love' - 'koi' and 'ai'.  Both words can be translated as 'love' in English, but Japanese people use these two words depending on situations in a context.


For instance, referring to the word, 'koi', including the one in the lyrics of 'Hanaya No Musume', the emotion involved must be the love between lovers, often in different sexes.  It is often applied for the love, which is quite passionate and emotional, and it is often temporary.  The word, 'koi' is derived from a verb, 'kou', which had been often used in Japanese literacy since Heian Era (794 ~ 1185).  'Kou' can be also translated as love in a simple sense, but the feeling is much more complexed - being attracted by someone bitterly and heartrendingly in a condition and a situation that loved ones cannot stay together.  I personally think that 'koi' also includes missing feeling.
In another words, 'koi' love is one-way (from someone to someone), not the interaction of to-and -fro emotions between two, and importantly, the emphasis is always on one side, which is his/her feeling in love.  So, later, after some time, when the two successfully communicate each other building up their fundamental relationship, then a temporary 'koi' love can grow up into a long-lasting 'ai' love.

'Ai' love is not referred to the one between lovers only, but also to objects in a broader sense, such as affection towards humanity, parents, children, truth, gods, nature, animals, etc.   It is because 'ai' love is sometimes combined with a feeling of yearning, stowing, and also recognition and appreciation of its value is highly counted .
So in Japanese, he/she can be tormented his/herself with 'koi' love, but never with 'ai' love.  (I hope it is clear enough for you to understand...)

'Koi' love has been considered as a good material for Japanese literacy, such as poems, songs, novels, waka.
Many 'koi-uta' (poems of love) can be found in Manyosyu.

The 'koi' love in 'Hanaya No Musume' is not the same as the 'ai' love in 'Bye Bye' in Fujifabric's 5th album.
"What is 'ai' love?   I don't know   I don't struggle if I know"
'I' don't struggle to understand  if it is 'koi' love, because you don't need an explanation to fall in love with someone as such a feeling is so emotional and instant, but because it is 'ai' love, 'I' do suffer.

Let's take a look back to 'Hanaya No Musume'.

'I' fall in little love with a young lady at the florist's.  "Where shall we go?", the lady looking at 'me'.  She disappears in a short while like a wild flower in the field. In early spring, wild flowers such as Fuki shoots (Fuki ), Fukuju-sou come out first, and field horsetails (Tsukushi), dandelions (Dandelion), Renge flowers, and violets.

(Fuki shoot)

クリックすると新しいウィンドウで開きます Without noticing, these flowers do not stay long, and summer plants and flowers are filled in the filed.  Wild flowers are not self-assertive.  They just bloom quietly, and when a season changes, those flowers are gone, too.  That is the image of wild flowers in Japan.



In the lyrics, 'I' go for a walk in a park with the lady.  They play hide-and-seek, block the way, get on a swing, play chasing like small children.  In the song, 'Music', 'I' play blocking the way ('tosenbo' in Japanese), too, but I am not sure if Shimura kun had a special feeling about this particular play.

He said that "We did not think too far how we play this song.  We payed more attention to rhythm and rocking atmosphere.". (Please refer to this interview in 2002. Fujifabric  Sorry, only Japanese is available!) Speaking of the lyrics, he said he intended to expose the feeling of human in a deep mind.

Enjoy "Hanaya No Musume".


sarahmagdalene said...

It's very wise to have two separate words for those two types of love. If we had them in English, a lot of broken marriages might be avoided.

Jack Russell in Bangkok said...

Dear sarahmagdalene,
Thank you for your comment.
Even we have these two separate words for different types of love, unfortunately, a divorce rate in Japan is still going up higher these days.
To fall in love with someone is such a wonderful thing, but to keep that love to each other is another story.
You need patience to succeed in anything, really.