harassed by butterflies without antennae"
Naoko Higashi is a Japanese poet who has been expressing her feelings of love and intimacy into Japanese Tanka. Tatsuro Kiuchi has extended her world and captured the depth of her feelings in beautiful illustrations. The combination of her Tanka's alluring simplicity with the understated elegance of the illustrations blend to create an intense world of emotional and artistic awareness.
Jonathan Leask's English translation has deftly kept the meaning and rhythm of the Tanka intact, providing for a highly enjoyable reading.
This edition includes 60 tanka stanzas accompanied by 36 color illustrations in 71 pages, plus an appendix with the full bilingual line to line rendition of the original Japanese text and its English translation.
First published as paper book by Poplar Japan in 2004, and the Kindle Japanese edition was released in 2013.
Naoko Higashi is a poet and novelist. Winner of the 7th Kadan Award for her thirty-tanka collection "Kusakanmuri no hōmonsha", she has published numerous works. They include tanka collections "Haruhara-san no Recorder", "Seiran", "Higashi Naoko shū" and "Jikkai"; novels "Toritsuku shima", "Suigintō ga kieru made", "Kusuriya no Tabitha", "Tomato Ketchup-su" and "Kiosk no Kirio"; and essay collections "Mimiura no hoshi" and "Sennen gohan". She also co-authored "Kaiten doa wa junban ni" and "Tanka ga arujanaika" with Hiroshi Homura.
Website “NaoQ”: http://www.ne.jp/asahi/tanka/naoq Twitter: @higashin
Illustrator Tatsuro Kiuchi was born in Tokyo, Japan, in 1966. After graduating from the Division of Natural Sciences within the College of Liberal Arts at International Christian University in Tokyo, he moved to the United States to study illustration. There he graduated from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. A freelance illustrator ever since his return to Japan in 1992, he is mainly commissioned to illustrate book jackets, picture books, magazines and other publications. Works include the picture book "Akaninja" (text by Hiroshi Homura) and serial comic strip "The Earthling". He has been recognized by the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, American Illustration, the Art Directors Club and Communication Arts. He has also won the Kodansha Publishing Culture Award for Illustration and is a member of the Tokyo Illustrators Society.
Naoko Higashi and Tatsuro Kiuchi have also collaborated on the following picture books for Kumon Publishing’s "Hajimete deau ehon" series: "Ame popopo", "Howahowa sakura", "Yuki fufufu", "Umi zazaza" and "Sawasawa momiji".
Jonathan Leask is a translator with an honors degree in Japanese from Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. He currently lives and works in Kanagawa, Japan.