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March 1st, 2019

I am pleased to announce the publication of These Things Called Dreams: The Poems of Ono no Komachi, another book of translations of classical Japanese poetry -- this one a single-author collection of arguably the most technically adept and passionate love poet Japan has ever produced. The original drafts were posted years ago in my journal (here and here), which have since been buffed and polished. Each poem is paired with a picture of the poet -- all of them painted or printed in the millennium after her death, so alongside the historical texts, you can trace her depictions through history. Full description:
Despite her repute as a love poet, for most of history Ono no Komachi was better known for her legendary beauty and supposed numerous affairs. If we look at her works themselves, however, we find a superb poetic technician who wrote some of the most passionate works of classical Japanese—by turns sarcastic, love-lorn, and regretful.

This new translation of all reliably attributed poems is lavishly illustrated with portraits spanning seven centuries, depicting Komachi and the legends that grew up around her. Japanese text and commentary is included for every poem.

    I dozed, and saw him,
the one for whom I long,
    and ever since then
I have begun relying
upon these things called dreams.

These Things Called Dreams: The Poetry of Ono no Komachi

I don't know if it matters to anyone, but by way of full disclosure: there is one poem that's in all three collections of translations.

Available in both paper and electronic editions from all the usual online retailers: print | Kindle | Nook | Kobo | Smashwords | et cetera. (Not available, alas, for ordering in hardcopy through your local bookstore because KDP’s printing tolerances aren’t up to snuff for thin spines. Boo. If you do not want to order from Amazon, I can arrange something.)

If you do read it, please consider reviewing or at least rating. Every tick-mark counts. Review copies can be arranged.

Originally posted at https://larryhammer.dreamwidth.org/715889.html (where it has comment count unavailable comments). You can comment here or there.