National Anime Song Translation Month 2016!
Utsusemi no Koi
Ephemeral Midsummer Love
Album / Collection: Utazoushi, Ryoufuu no Utage
Track # 6
Description: Tachibana no Tomomasa Song
sung by Inoue Kazuhiko
View romaji/english lyrics
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* The dictionary definition of utsusemi is "(n) cicada, cast-off cicada shell, man of this world, the real world", and it has an additional poetic-usage connotation denoting late summer (Julyish). "Man of the world" does seem plausible, because Tomomasa has a reputation as an indolent charmer, but I think it's trying to imply "hollow love"/"husk of love" and "transient love" as much as or more than the "worldly/hedonistic/citified" connotations of "man of the world". Negitoro from the AnimeLyrics forum says that to him it feels equivalent to hakanai. I can't get all that into one English line and still have it sound coherent, so I went with "ephemeral midsummer love" to try to imply the way that the sound of cicadas makes people feel...
** A kariginu is a type of clothing that Heian noblemen wore; the components of it mean "hunter's silks", and I think the image is of the hunter becoming prey, being skinned like that which he hunts, so I didn't want to leave it untranslated the way I might have despite the fact that it has a specific (and somewhat untranslatable without a picture) definition as a unit of clothing.
*** Literally bridge rather than arch, and marks left by fingernails, but I thought that condensing to "arch of nail-marks" sounded better than trying to get all that into one sentence. Also, it's grammatically fuzzy what the image of the curtain of the night was tied to; I also considered giving it as "if, beneath the curtain of night, you are wakened by the distant thunder..."
**** the word is being pronounced in a way that just means "strings," but the kanji written indicate koto (Japanese harp-like instrument) strings. In English "the harp of my heart" sounds more natural than "the koto of my heart," I think.
Translated and transliterated by Risu-chan
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