己龍 (Kiryū) – 鵺 (Nue) Translation

Kanji: taken from a comment

Translation

Title: Chimera

Inside me there is “that thing”

no matter how many times I try to shed light on it, it disappears into nothing.

But every time I turn my back to it…

it screams with an animal’s cry.

In an endless variety of situation

I’m tormented by its many words

and I’m turning mad.

“You shall use my bigger power for your own good”*, it boasts

like winds playfully soaring through the wind.

Fluttering…

When I turn my head to one side, the opposite side seems to mock me,

and I mock that other side.

When I look to the right, it creeps to the right,

when I look to the left, it creeps to the left,

behind me it makes an awful and loud noise

and in front of me it shows a mask of purity.

In the end, you want me to punish you?

In the end, you want me to forgive you?

In the end, you want me to kill you?

or…do you want me to love you?

I keep being patted heavily, heavily,

but in truth… in truth it’s not there, so…

it’s a lie… but it’s not a lie

Just… I’m afraid of “something” that my eyes can’t see and…

…it comes…

Like playing hide-and-seek all alone,

What resound in the painted over night

is a singing voice saying “This is me, the others don’t know anything about me”

Just…I’m afraid of “something” that my eyes can’t see

and I’m becoming crazy…

Screams dance

in the screeching night.

So, what will happen?**

What remains of your former self keeps scarring itself,

you are chocking in your own pain…

and you cried like an animal.

No matter how much you try to sleep…

I keep being patted heavily, heavily,

but in truth… in truth it’s not there, so…

it’s a lie… but it’s not a lie

Just… I’m afraid of “something” that my eyes can’t see and…

…it comes…

Like playing hide-and-seek all alone,

What resound in the painted over night

is a singing voice saying “This is me, the others don’t know anything about me”

Just…I’m afraid of “something” that my eyes can’t see

and I’m becoming crazy…

(A thousand of chirps become the sound of the thunder)

When you’ll start to sing by grinding, grinding you teeth,

you’ll see that everything is real, therefore nothing exists.

Just… that “something” that you eyes can’t eyes, from the start

was inside of you,

always right here.

It spread its wings

and with a loud voice

it sings “this is me, the others don’t know anything about me”.

The only thing that my eyes can see was there from the start.

Look,

tonight it’ll be

a feast of grown wings.

Notes and Other

*= the expression used here is a saying which suggest to exploit powerful people’s power for one’s own good. I remodeled the sentence as if the chimera was saying that to the main character.

**= another famous saying. Aside from the meaning, it can be literally translated as “what will come out? A demon or a snake”, which is kinda fitting with theme of the song.

The song talks about the transformation of the main character into a chimera. In Japanese folklore demons are nothing but humans transfigured into horrible creatures but some kind of negative feelings. More specifically, there have been many depiction of the Japanese chimera, and since some of them show the beasts covered it feather, this might explain its sound described as a chirping throughout the song.

In the backstage video of the song, the main guitarist and composer of the song Sakai Mitsuki describes this song as process of someone who accepts its own nature for what it truly is. More in detail, he says that we usually tend to see ourselves according to the image that the others have of us: from this perspective, we truly are a chimera, an image composed by the many different opinions of the others. However, if we accept being ourselves, we are no longer monsters, we are just that “something” that we always have been, indipendent from the others.

This interpretation sounds also very in tune with classic Visual-kei themes, where negative figures tend to be re-interpretated into positive character that won’t fit into society’s general conception of “good” and “bad”.

R-指定 (R-Shitei) ーラストレイン (Rasuto Rein) Translation

Kanji-Romaji

Translation

Title: Last Rain/Last Train*

 

A non-stop early summer rain falls down,

and the freshness** of the coming month of June is quickly gone

without waiting for the season to change.

 

Swallowed by the last train,

you and me are fixed in the memories of that day,

with an end like an happy ending of a film

let’s say our goodbye now.

 

You, who used to hate crowds,

hide your face with your red umbrella…

I have a feeling that you want to tell me something,

I’m scared and I can’t really laugh.

 

While I even tried not to sleep,

the lyrics I scribbled will be of some comfort for my soul?

I link dot to lines***,

and the melody on whom I put and sing on knocks on the window.

 

Since I have to go home with the Yamanote line****,

I’ll take you to the express for Oda****,

even tonight there’s this hateful rain.

Under the same umbrella, in the night tainted of the same colour,

I wish you hugged me.

 

A rhapsody in blue*****

would really fit us who had an incredible first meeting, don’t you think?

You try to look more adult and being more mature than me

you say a kind lie: “See you again”…

 

Memories pile up, Shinjuku Station, at the east exit a crowd of people,

the umbrellas bloom vividly, they look like hydrangea flowers, isn’t it a beautiful scene?

 

Even though I look for someone who looked like you,

as if the cold rain choose me,

every single drop, icily, resounds like an instrument.

A lonely Fender, I can’t give up on this love

I want to compose a song about it!

 

Swallowed by the last train,

you and me are fixed in the memories of that day,

with an end like an happy ending of a film,

when we’ll wave our hands it will be the end.

A rain of spilled tears falls…

 

Your goodbye taught me

what is really important…

 

Notes and Other

*=The title is a pun: it says “last rain” but sounds like “last train”.

**=  the word itself refers to the colour blue, however the same colour is often used as a symbol for manother things, like freshness, youth and much more: it’s likely that the singers is implying many other meanings other than the one I chose.

***=It refers to “writing musical notes” (because the musical notes are dots with a line) but also to “go from a train station to another” (because in Japan train stations are referred with “dot” and the railways that connect them are called “lines”): extremely clever lyric trick.

****=All of these are real name of train station or trains.

*****=Rapsody in Blue is a famous song in which many different genres are mixed together creating a very harmonious symphony: I’m not sure but it may be a paragon with the date of which the song talks about (like they are so different but they work so good together).

After many years I felt like I managed to translate this song in a proper manner: my previous attempt was not incorrect, but it failed to convey the general images of the song.

The song revolves around the image of the tipical rainfalls of the rainy season in Japan (end of May, June), linked with many other tropes of the season, like hydrangeas (the flower assigned to June in classical Japanese literature) and the people flooding through Shinjuku Station with their colorful umbrellas that recall the many small flowers of the hydrangea. In this gloomy yet colorful scenario, the main character sees from afar a previous love interest, but, unable to reach her, remembers the way they parted, pretending they would meet again. A true feels trap for Japanese and me as well: I feel like this is one of the song that has been on my playlist since the dawn of my musical tastes.

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己龍 (Kiryu) ー 暁歌水月(Gyouka Suigetsu) Translation

Kanji-Romaji

Translation

Title: A song whose beauty cannot be conveyed by words*

 

The end is harsh, my consciousness faint, I let go of your hand

the tears that flow while you pray and remember me are of the colour of the rain, and they flow and flow away.

 

Our farewell gift will be the minced fragments of me

and the pain that will remain here.

 

Until our life will be exhausted, we will …. dreams**

come on, let’s sing it together.

…. our screaming voice**

will be the words*** that we sob while our hearts are torn.

Tainted faintly by the light of the perfect day for a farewell,

let’s wave our hands goodbye with a smile.

All the lies fade away, reality slumbers

in a transparent twilight.

 

But even now I can’t understand that “something” which keeps on burning me and turning me into smoke,

I just keep walking

following the path of dreams.

 

I keep feeding myself with the pain and the sadness which twist my voice…

 

Because the silence that gets closer and closer is scary.

 

Until our life will be exhausted, we will …. dreams**

come on, let’s sing it together.

…. our screaming voice**

will be the words*** that we sob while our hearts are torn.

Tainted faintly by the light of the perfect day for a farewell,

let’s wave our hands goodbye with a smile.

All the lies fade away, reality slumbers

in a transparent twilight.

 

And while we dream within a dream, the horizon turns hazy…

 

Notes and others

*=The title is a pun on the expression 暁花水月 (read in the same way as the title) which is literally “flowers on the image of the moon reflected on the water” indicating the concept of  “a beauty that cannot be conveyed by words”. In the title of the song instead of 花 (“flowers”) there’s 歌(“song”): I tried to combine the pun and the meaning in the title I chose.

**=since this is a song to thank the fans (so a “must” song during the live) the lines are left with no verb so that everyone can say whatever they prefer while song is performed: I find this thing extremely genial.

***=The expression for “words” here doesn’t refer to “common words” but to “the words of classical Japanese poetry”. They were seen as unique since they were used to talk about one’s own feeling with honesty and elegance (and actually with a lot of other things).

This song is all about the concept of farewell, that’s why the band usually uses it to close their live performance.

While translating this song, I really felt the lack of words to convey the real beauty of this song: there’s just so much behind each and everyone of these words that I could spend lines and lines to explain everything and I still wouldn’t be able to completely clarify their meaning… I did my best anyway.

There are many reference to Buddhism, starting from the video itself which is a Buddhist funeral, and the expressions “reality will slumber”, “lies fading away” and “dream within a dream” which are famous concepts in Buddhist thinking.

 

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Plastic Tree – 落花 (Rakka) Translation

Kanji

Translation

Title: Falling Flowers

Is this feeling of emptiness really appropriate? I’ll try to make a song about this, here you go

The dawn has reached the most saturated gradation

How many thousand times have I already felt like this? It would be ridicolous to say that I have gotten better at it,

but today*, well, let’s say today too, and tomorrow as well I will continue being like this.

There are many option in front of my eyes and I choose according to my selfish desires,

and without being nor wrong nor right, the days go on.

The flowers bloom incontrollable, and falling, they scatter all around, where is the wind carrying their soul**?

It’s hard to forget and when I chase my memories, only myself brightly shows through.

Suddenly, I realized that I’ve slept for two or three minutes, but the second hand of the clock keeps moving and goes on.

Do you understand this sensation of ceasing to exist and disappear without feeling it?

I resolved that I should forget any conclusion, but claering both my fate and my self-criticism

is really necessary or not? The days pose this question…

The season forget about me and disappear in an instant, but the words*** in the wind won’t stop echoing.

Is the cycle of happiness and sadness never ending? While stil being filled with life, it will end as if it was a dream.

Hey, can someone please stay by my side forever?

This way even my naive action will have a meaning

Hey, do please dance as you like,

but we’ve already ran out of time, lights out, emptiness.

The flowers bloom incontrollable, and falling, they scatter all around, where is the wind carrying their soul**?

It’s hard to forget and when I chase my memories, even if you are so vivid, I don’t really know who are you.

Therefore, since I understood that all of this is just a fantasy, one day I’ll say farewell

and will sink into the world.

Notes and Other

*= the sentence starts as if “something is going to be different today”, but then the singer quicly correct himself, stating “today too and tomorrow as well will be the same”.

**=the word that I translated with “soul” is full of many different meanings and can be interpreted in many ways. First of all, it can also mean “mind”, “feelings”, “essence”, and it’s unclear if it’s referring to those of the singer of those of the flowers or both. I’m actually pending for third option, since the sence of emptiness that the songs mention at the beginning as a feeling of the singer is often linked in classical literature to the image of scattering flowers in the wind: I’d say that the protagonist aims at identifying himself with those flowers and the way they’re feeling when they’re swept away in the wind while in full bloom.

***= in Japanese the term “word” has a very unique origin, as it stems from the term “leaf of utterances”, which now sounds as a rather archaic expression, but it is deliberately used in such a way in this song. This term is central to one of the very first work of Japanese poetry where the compiler describes the word (leaves of utterances) as the product of feelings that only Japanese people feel, described as “seeds of the soul”. In the context of the song, the wind may carry away the flowers (and the main character as well), but the words (leaves) still offer to the main character a way to express his feelings.

While the songs states pretty clearly that the main theme “the sense of emptiness”, the rest is pretty much open to interpretation: let’s go step by step. Since it’s Plastic Tree, most likely the song has something to do with a love relationship and there is actually a “you” that seems to be slowly fading away in the memory of the main character. The sense of emptiness is often associated with the lack of feeling towards specific things, so my guess is that the main character, even though he remembers vividly the features of the past lover, has lost contact with the feelings that were attached to them. A similar destiny is shared by flowers (most likely cherry flowers) whose beauty is always remembered in everyone’s words, but their actualy body gets lost everytime in the wind. And so, once the fantasy of love is over, every memory is destined to fall down, just like petals from flowers, and get lost in the wind.

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