★love can be different from person to person ― Sayaka confesses her feelings and prevails over Jaugo★
Jaugo: So, now it’s time for love, and that a spell of happy love poems… are you ready, Sayaka-san?
Sayaka: What do you mean, I wonder…
Jaugo: Nothing much, it’s only love, the oldest and simplest emotion of mankind… or for that matter, any animals.
Sayaka: You sound bestial…
Jaugo: Sorry if I sounded inappropriate; I think I’d have to be cautious… especially before a teen age girl like you, Sayaka-san. I’m afraid “love” is not a fit subject for an open discussion in a high school classroom, although it’s the greatest favorite of Heianese TANKA.
Sayaka: That’s what I so often hear… is it statistically correct?
Jaugo: If you are curious, here’s the data: of some 9,700 TANKA appearing in 八代集（hachidaishuu = eight great Imperial TANKA anthologies）, those belonging to the genre of “恋（Love）” amount to some 2,650… it’s phenomenal 27%! Well over a quarter of Heianese TANKA anthologies is teeming with LOVE!
Sayaka: A quarter of Heianese nobles’ lives were occupied with love?… I wonder what they did with the rest?… a-third in sleep, another third in work, a quarter is already spent in love… oh no, they had little or no time for other activities, when did they study?
Jaugo: Are you really that meticulous, or are you just joking, Sayaka-san?
Sayaka: Of course, joking… did you really think I’m that stupid?
Jaugo: Not really. I just suspected that the portion of love in your busy high-school life was too small to try a love potion number 9.
Sayaka: What do you mean by “a love potion No.9”?
Jaugo: Ah… nothing; try searching on the WEB later if you are really curious. What I wanted to say was that, when really involved in love, you get too busy loving someone to do anything else ― it’s really only LOVE, LOVE, LOVE ― love is all you do, all you want to do… you even start to feel love is all you need to do, when in fact there is much more than love to real life. Love is really surreal in that it takes over everything else in life, it stops you from thinking anything else, puts you in a kind of stasis, ecstatic stasis where the flow of time stops and all the worries of your life will be gone… until you, or he, suddenly realize your life, or his life, is too precious to waste on such unrealistic fantasies ― if you both wake up at the same time, it’s just a common sad story of a lost love; if you wake up too earlier than him, it’s a possible nightmare turning him into a vengeful stalker and making you a poor victim. All lovers fall in love together, but not all lovers finish together… oops! I forgot to be cautious. Sorry I just got too excited alone while I left you cold, Sayaka-san.
Sayaka: (…) Are you finished? In case you forget, I haven’t even started yet.
Jaugo: Many apologies for starting and finishing all by myself; now, it’s all yours, Sayaka-san, what do you think about this TANKA, or about love itself… I’m all ears.
Sayaka: (…) What would you do if I told you this poem is exactly what I’m feeling about you, about our relationship, Jaugo-san?
Jaugo: Um… if you were trying to manipulate me, I’d say, “Not bad” ― no man would be immune to such enticing words from your mouth, Sayaka-san. You are so cute, too attractive for most men to take it as a joke or a sweet compliment.
Sayaka: I’m not trying to manipulate you ― you know how honest I am before you.
Jaugo: Are you feeling you are in love with me?
Sayaka: I do. Just as this TANKA says.
Jaugo: If you honestly think this particular TANKA speaks for you, that you are really in love with me, then, it would be my responsibility to correct your confusion.
Sayaka: What confusion?
Jaugo: Confusing love with something else ― much akin to love yet essentially different from it.
Sayaka: You say I’m deluded?
Jaugo: I’m sure you are… are you ready to get disillusioned?
Sayaka: I’m all ears.
Jaugo: OK, let’s finish it in one stroke ― are your scores at school getting very poor or rather better after you met me?
Sayaka: Much better since our relationship began.
Jaugo: Good. Q.E.D.
Jaugo: Quod Erat Demonstrandum ― mathematical phrase in Latin meaning “which had to be proven”, yet it’s been thus proven now. The fact that you are doing rather better than worse at school in your studies is enough proof that you are engaged in something much more substantial and necessary for your life than all-absorbing love… you are in love not with me but with what you share with me ― the love of knowledge, love of art, love of birds’ songs, love of Bruce Lee, and love of this pleasant conversation you and I both enjoy so much… so much do you enjoy it that you are trying to make this conversation better, make yourself better, intellectually and emotionally better, so that you can delight me with your witty comments, so that you can feel yourself worthy as my conversation partner. That’s a very good thing for both of us, since we are trying to give as much as we can to each other, thereby making ourselves that much better. If it was love, on the other hand, we would try to take as much as we could from each other… and that without hesitation, without remorse, without any doubt that we were entitled to do so… until either of us have a doubt about it… I’m sorry I left you behind again, but trust me it’s true ― so long as you and I find delight in giving something to each other, not taking from each other, it’s not “love” in the truest and cruelly brutal sense of the word.
Sayaka: You mean love is cruel and brutal?
Jaugo: As for love at its purest and wildest, yes.
Sayaka: Is there some other phase of love?
Jaugo: If you call them “love”, yes, there can be several phases of love. If you so desire, our common interest in this conversation may as well be called “love” of a kind, although such love is different from the love that gave birth to this particular TANKA.
Sayaka: What’s the difference?
Jaugo: The object of “love” ― with a purely bestial love, the object is “you” and “me”, we’d like to take the most from each other; with our “love” of this conversation, the object is “our common delight” we’d like to take as much as we can in this conversation, at the same time that we’d like to give as much as we can to this conversation.
Sayaka: But, lovers ― purely bestial lovers as you say ― must also try to give something to each other, I believe. Wives and husbands try to help each other to make their family life as happy as possible… do you still insist they are trying to take as much as they can from each other?
Jaugo: No. I agree that good husbands and wives try to cooperate with each other to make their families better. But the emotion behind such constructive actions of men and women is something other than “love”; something much more lasting than purely bestial “love”… in fact, I feel “love” alone is never enough for men and women to get along with each other as partners of a lifetime. “Love” may be an ignition, but can never be a fuel… although I’d like to refrain from sounding too assertive, since I’ve never been married and had my own family or children. In that sense, I’m no more entitled to say anything about the love of husbands and wives than you are, Sayaka-san.
Sayaka: (…) You don’t think I love you?
Jaugo: I believe you do; you can’t love having conversation with someone without loving that someone. But that kind of love is different from this TANKA’s love.
Sayaka: I don’t know; what’s so different?
Jaugo: Do you feel yourself miserable when you are not by my side?
Sayaka: In fact, I do; I find myself intolerably bored in anyone else’s company.
Jaugo: Do you feel it intolerable that I should be doing something other than talking with you?
Sayaka: Um… I don’t know; you have your own work to do, I’d hate to interrupt and be a nuisance to you… but I’d like to be with you as much as I can.
Jaugo: But you can stand not seeing me or seeing me with some other women?
Sayaka: I… I’d be feeling sad if I saw you in love with some other woman.
Jaugo: Of course; I’d be feeling rather embarrassed to see you in love with some other man.
Sayaka: Would you?
Jaugo: Yes, because in that case I’d feel myself a nerd to get so emotionally involved in a conversation with someone else’s girlfriend with whom I’m not supposed to be too close. But then again, such feelings arise not from within me but from without ― I can’t stand making a foolish nerd of myself in the eyes of others; not that I can’t stand losing you and not being able to have you all the time beside me as my love. If I’m really in love with you, I just can’t stand not being able to see you all the time… that’s what this poem is saying. If you really love someone, there is no room for feeling for the situation of that someone ― in other words, “見遣り（miyari = feeling for and walking up to someone）” gives way to total and desperate “見遣し（miokoshi = hey, you look at me, be with me and live only for me, you are mine, let no one else touch you!）” ― you just want that someone to live every moment with you and for you alone… is that what you expect of me, Sayaka-san?
Sayaka: (…) If I said so, I’d be making a nuisance of myself to you…
Jaugo: And that would be the end of this delightful conversation of ours… that’s what you are afraid of, isn’t it?
Sayaka: I wouldn’t ask you if I knew the answer…
Jaugo: Sorry if I hurt your feelings. I just wanted to make it clear that I am determined never to lose you as my uniquely indispensable and irreplaceable partner of this delightful conversation. You “love” me as your partner of this conversation, and this conversation delights you so much that you feel you’d like to be engaged in it all the time, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that Sayaka likes to be engaged to Jaugo as a partner of her lifetime. That is a sweet confusion girls of your age are so prone to fall into. But this sweet confusion is something men with evil intentions try so often to take advantage of and make victims of young girls with little experience in love. So, take care not to be fooled by such sweet confusion in your relationship with any other male humans. Even when you are acutely aware that it’s something different from love, you must take delicate care that it should not get confused with “love” on the other side of your relationship… most men will want to feel romantically deluded into being in “love”, mutually in love with an attractive woman like you… Did I preach too much?
Sayaka: (…) I think you are right in what you preach… this is the first lesson that didn’t make me glad in understanding.
Jaugo: You don’t have to understand. Love is not a fit subject for “understanding”… you’ll know when it’s time for you to know. Just remember what Bruce Lee said at the beginning of “Enter the Dragon”.
Sayaka: “Don’t think ― FEEL…”
Jaugo: Love is feeling ― feeling love; love is needing to be loved… do you know who said it?
Sayaka: Jaugo Noto?
Jaugo: John Lennon, in “Love(1970)”… although it could have been said by anyone really in love ― if you are really in love, you NEED, not WANT, to be loved by your lover.
Sayaka: Love is desperate, you say?
Jaugo: And selfish.
Sayaka: You sound as if anyone with the attitude of “見遣り（miyari = feeling for and walking up to others）” could never fall in love…
Jaugo: Even someone basically capable of feeling for and walking up to others cannot help being desperately selfish when really in love.
Sayaka: It seems love is a kind of mental disease…
Jaugo: Maybe that’s why true love never lasts long; otherwise, those really in love are sure to ruin their lives as well as their nerves. Not that all mental diseases are totally bad.
Sayaka: Is love a beautiful mental disease?
Jaugo: I don’t think love is beautiful; love is only beautiful in words, never in the flesh… oh, I forgot to be cautious again! I should refrain from sounding too assertive. To some people, love may be beautiful even in the flesh: love is a purely personal emotion, because it is totally SELFISH ― love can be different from person to person, so many people, so many feelings about love… hence the appalling 27% predominance of “恋（Love）” in Heianese TANKA ― everyone has his say or her say when it comes to love.
Sayaka: In other words, I don’t have to take YOUR answer as THE CORRECT answer when it comes to “love”?
Jaugo: When it comes to “love”, you’re right, you’ll always be right in whatever you feel about love. But when it comes to Heianese TANKA on love, you might as well gain much from listening to what I tell you.
Sayaka: All right, I will… Say, Jaugo-san, there’s something I failed to impress upon you.
Jaugo: I’m all ears…
Sayaka: This TANKA is certainly speaking for me in that particular expression “逢はざりし時如何なりしものとてか（awazarishi toki ikanarishi mono tote ka = I wonder what kind of person I had been before I met you）” ― I’ve been a different person since I met you and learnt a lot from talking with you. I owe you a lot, Jaugo-san, I’m really grateful, that’s what I want you to know.
Jaugo: I’m glad you say that.
Sayaka: To tell you the truth, I’m as much afraid as glad that you’ve made me so different… for fear that I should lose you some day: if I should lose you, I’d be a different kind of person, worse kind of person. So, I never want to lose you… I know it’s selfish of me to think so, but that’s my true feeling ― isn’t it… love?
Jaugo: Do you remember my story about push-ups?
Sayaka: How could I forget…
Jaugo: A man who used to do 500 daily push-ups has now been reduced to only 100 ― I’m different now, but I don’t feel I’m a worse kind of person… does it sound like a howling of the underdog?
Sayaka: No. It only goes to show that you have overcome the “aspiration spiral” and are “no slave to advancement”.
Jaugo: You really make me proud of you, Sayaka-san, I could never tell you anything without making you the greater for the story. Unfortunately, however, nothing can go on forever, maybe there’s a time when this delightful conversation with you will be over; but something will remain within you even after it’s been gone. I’m still in “love” with push-ups, although I’ll never do 500 in a row. Likewise, I may not be able to stay with you forever, but something will surely stay with you as a result of our delightful conversation… or as a memento of your “love” with this strange person called Jaugo Noto… we should try to expand the glorious kingdom of such memories as best we can while we can. You’d gain nothing from worrying about losing. Carpe diem!
Sayaka: Seize the day?
Jaugo: Yes! Spring and Summer may not last forever, but that’s no reason for you to avoid enjoying Spring and Summer while you can. It might be foolishly selfish of you to want to enjoy Spring and Summer forever, but it’s just natural for you to enjoy them as much as you can while it’s actually Spring and Summer. While I’m here with you and you’re here with me, we can naturally enjoy as much as we can.
Sayaka: Without worrying about anything?
Jaugo: That’s right. You could even delude yourself into feeling you were really in love with me ― I’d never take unfair advantage of your girlish fancy after preaching you out of it in such a fatherly manner.
Sayaka: (…) With all due respect, Jaugo-san, I would hate you to sound too assertive about my personal feelings ― it might be “delusion” or “girlish fancy” to YOU, but not necessarily to ME. “Love can be different from person to person” ― that’s the most impressive part of today’s largely intangible lesson about “love” for me… what do you say, Jaugo-san?
Sayaka: I’m all ears…
Jaugo: …I say, I’m sorry about what I said ― I obviously underestimated you: you sound as if… no, you actually are a grown-up woman, on equal terms with me, or having the upper hand of me… I’m impressed. OK, I respect your personal feelings, I won’t treat you as a “girl”, I mean, not as someone with girlish fancy about love… what’s your comment, Sayaka-san?
Sayaka: What a difference a day with you has made of me!
Jaugo: Indeed… boys will be boys, but girls will suddenly be women. You are a great teacher for me, Sayaka-san.
Sayaka: Glad to hear you say that, Jaugo-san. I can hardly wait what kind of “love” poem will come up next!
Jaugo: I’m thrilled, too, to imagine what you’ll make of it… or should I say, what it will make of you…
Sayaka: Now I know you were completely wrong in one thing, Jaugo-san.
Jaugo: Well, in what?
Sayaka: You said “Love is not a fit subject for an open discussion with a girl” ― I say, love is the best subject for a girl to beat men, even men of your intellectual caliber, Jaugo-san… I really love it!
Jaugo: …It seems I have a tough road ahead of me…
Sayaka: Joyful rides ahead of US!… How many love songs are there waiting for us?
Jaugo: Eight more.
Sayaka: I’d rather for ever more!
Jaugo: I couldn’t agree with you…
Jaugo: Yeah, more or less… Just to restore my strength for the next battle, I’d like to retreat from the front for today… with your permission, Princess Sayaka?
Sayaka: Permission granted ― dismissed, Private Jaugo. See you again soon!
Jaugo: Thank you, your Highness. So long.
I can’t imagine my life alone before I fell in love.
Now a moment without you near is too painful for me to bear.
あふ【逢ふ】〔自ハ四〕（あは＝未然形）＜VERB:be mutually in love with, have affairs with＞
とき【時】〔名〕＜NOUN:the time, days＞
…in those days when I had not known you
いかなり【如何なり】〔形動ナリ〕（いかなり＝連用形）＜ADVERB:how is A, in what way does A exist＞
もの【物】〔名〕＜NOUN:the way, how＞
とて【とて】〔格助〕＜POSTPOSITIONAL PARTICLE(MANNER):in what way＞
…I simply can’t remember how I spent my time [alone without you]
の【の】〔格助〕＜POSTPOSITIONAL PARTICLE(POSSESSIVE):’s, of, belonging to＞
…even at this very moment [I spend alone without you]
みる【見る】（み＝未然形）＜VERB:see, meet, have a date, rendezvous＞
ば【ば】〔接助〕＜POSTPOSITIONAL PARTICLE(CONDITION):if, when＞
こひし【恋し】〔形シク〕（こひしき＝連体形係り結び）＜VERB:yearn for, be impatient for＞
…I just can’t stand not seeing you
《awazarishi toki ikanarishi mono tote ka tada ima no ma mo mine ba koishiki》
■what 後朝（kinu-ginu） means■
After such a long discussion which ended up in the conclusion that there is no reasonable arguing about love, it would be foolish of me to try to reasonably make out this particular TANKA, but it would also be useful to add that this is the kind of TANKA which is called “後朝の文（kinu-ginu no fumi = the morning-after letter）”.
Throughout Heian period, the format of love was quite different from that of today: men fell in love with women, but women couldn’t fall in love with men, at least at the beginning of love ― men always took the lead, women were always on the waiting side.
And you must also remember the fact ― a very strange fact from today’s standard ― that men and women DID NOT MEET until they had agreed to MEET AND MATE with each other. Please don’t take me wrong: I’m not saying that Japanese men took it for granted that they could make love with women on their first date; I’m simply saying that a Japanese woman did not allow any man to see her in person until the man (or rather his love letters along with beautiful TANKA) made her feel romantic enough to want to have affairs with him… and until her parents were convinced that the man was worthy to be the father of their grandchildren.
Yes, in Heianese love affairs, men and women did not know what they really looked like until they agreed to meet (and possibly make love with) each other. In other words, their love affairs were purely imaginary, fostered by the exchange of romantic love letters, until they really knew each other on their first date and the next phase (physical and carnal phase of love) started… if it got started at all, that is. If the disparity between the romantically swollen image of the woman (or the man) and the actual reality was too much to bear, men and women just met once… once and for all: there would be no second date.
Such being the case, the moment of truth for Heianese men and women ― especially for women ― was not the day when they first met in person and knew what they really looked like, but the time when a letter of thanks arrived from men to women a day or two later… or never arrived at all. Such letters, which thanked her for allowing him to see her (and have carnal knowledge of her, perhaps) and asked for another date as a possible beginning of their steady relationship, was called “後朝の文（kinu-ginu no fumi）”.
”後朝（kinu-ginu = the morning after）” was originally “衣々（kinu-ginu = in respective clothes, he in this dress and she in that dress）” ― suggesting they were at one with each other naked in bed. As might be inferred from this phrase, Heianese men and women in love with each other did not live together in the same house to wake up the next morning both naked in the same bed (even after they got married): their love affairs developed in the room of the woman, where the loving man visited only when he felt inclined to love her and she (and the bright moonlight at night) allowed him to come and make love with her in her room… only to get parted after the affair was over and the moon made way for the early morning sunshine.
That having been said, please appreciate the real taste of this TANKA, putting yourself in the shoes of a Heianese woman waiting with impatient suspense for the morning-after love letter from the man whom she met for the first time on the night before… would you love to meet him for the second time?… of course you would! (just don’t consider what he actually looked like on the first date)
In case you fell really in love with this enthusiastic “後朝の文（kinu-ginu no fumi）”, I will treat you to some more love poems equally or even more passionately asking you to meet (& mate):
《あひみでもありにしものをいつのまに ならひてひとのこひしかるらむ：ai-mide mo arinishi monowo itsuno mani naraite hito no koishikaruramu?》『拾遺集（Shuui-shuu）』恋（Love） No.712 よみ人しらず（anonymous）逢ひ見でも在りにしものを(I had already existed in this world even before I met you, but)何時の間に(I don’t know since when)馴らひて(I’ve been so deeply attached to you)人の恋しかるらむ(that I came to miss you so much when I’m not with you)
《あひみてののちのこころにくらぶれば むかしはものをおもはざりけり：ai-mite no nochi no kokoro ni kurabureba mukashi wa mono wo omowazarikeri》『拾遺集（Shuui-shuu）』恋（Love） No.710 by 藤原敦忠（Fujiwara-no-Atsutada）逢ひ見ての後の心に比ぶれば(compared with myself after I met you)昔は物を思はざりけり（my heart used to be rather passionless, which is now burning so hot because of you）
《おもひやるこころにたぐふみなりせば ひとひにちたびきみはみてまし：omoiyaru kokoro ni taguu mi nariseba hito-hi ni chi-tabi kimi wa mitemashi》『後撰集（Gosen-shuu）』恋（Love） No.679 by 大江千古（Oue-no-Chifuru）思ひ遣る心(I will always send out my heart to you)に比ふ身なりせば(if my body could also be sent out to you)一日に千度(a thousand times a day)君は見てまし(I would surely come and see you)
・・・Do they all sound alike to you? Of course, they do to you, because you are not personally in love with those poets ― you will only know how uniquely affectionate they sound to you if they come from the men you really love.
We provide you not with actual conversation partners, but we enable you to engage in intellectually enticing conversation with Sayaka-san/Jaugo-san(…no mean feat, isn’t it?)
WEB lessons by ZUBARAIE LLC. are currently for JAPANESE students only, conducted in Japanese language (…sorry for English speakers)