Sakutaro Hagiwara

(1886-1942 / Japan)

Looking Up At The Aoki Boughs - Poem by Sakutaro Hagiwara

In a poor town, down a lifeless back alley,
There stood an aoki plant.

What I need is love,
I need a poor-hearted maiden to love me.
Her hands will quake on approach of these green boughs.
And shall go on quaking, gently, hoping to earn my love.

I'd been a street-beggar in far away places,
This hungry soul would miserably weep,
When the draft carried the reek of spoiled onions and meat,
With a tattered beggar's heart I often spent time loitering
those back alleys.

I have a thirst for love that comes after the long-withstood
Weariness of bitter loneliness,
A great, ocean-like feeling, fondly recalled.

Growing on a roadside plot was the aoki and its boughs,
Whose measley leaves fluttered feebly in the wind.

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Poem Submitted: Monday, September 20, 2010

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