Tendo Taijin

Tendo Taijin


TendoTaijin (PoetReciterCalligrapher)

Born in 1944 in Otaru-city, Hokkaido.

His published collections include: A World of Illusion (1981), The Azure Ring of Ezra Pound (1995), Great God, Kitchee Manitou (1997), Rosso di Maggio (1999), The Wind of Dakar (2005), The Snow of Picos de Europa (2015).

In July 1990, he attended a master class with Galina Vishnevskaya in Salzburg.

In March 2002, he held a solo voice performance at the Arena de Verona, Italy.

Since October 2006, he has produced 1,650 poetry performances in his Art performance project titled « Projet La Voix des Poètes » in Tokyo, Japan.

A member of the International Poetry Association of Africa since 2000, at present he is active in reviving the recitation of poetry and participates in festivals around the world, in such places as: Argentina (Buenos Aires, Rosario); Bangladesh (Dhaka); Benin (Cotonou); Colombia (Medellín); Cuba (Havana, Matanzas); France (Saint-Nazaire); Iran (Abadan, Tehran); Iraq (Babylon, Baghdad); Italy (Genoa, Florence, Pistoia, Verona); Madagascar (Antanabarivo); Mali (Bamako, Dogon); Mauritius (Port Louis); New Zealand (Wellington); Portugal (Aveiro); Réunion (Saint-Denis); Senegal (Dakar, Saint-Louis); South Korea (Pyeongchang, Seoul); Switzerland (Zurich); U.S.A. (Seattle, WA); Venezuela (Caracas); etc. Since 1990, each year he re-dedicates his voice to the god of the sea at Watazumi Shrine(Nagasaki-ken). He is presently a member of the Pen Club of Japan, and is renowned all over the world as a writer and reciter of poetry, a calligrapher, and an art critic.

臥したるドラゴンへのオード   Ode to a Crouching Dragon

                                    Tendo Taijin

臥したるドラゴン                                         A crouching dragon

すなわち 天は虚ろに                                  That is,   under a hollow heaven

地は重く                                                       The earth is heavy

雲は空を満たし                                            Clouds fill the sky

草木には露がしたたり                                  Dew drips from the plants

渇きを癒す                                                 Healing thirst

日と月とは光をかくし                                  The light of the sun and moon is hidden

民は不可解な                                                The people look up at the sky

この冬の印を帯びた                                     Tinged with the mysterious

空を見る                                                       Seal of winter

身動きしはじめるドラゴン                           The dragon begins to move its body

すなわち霧は瞬時に裂け                              That is to say, the fog suddenly breaks

滋養をもたらす陽光                                   The sunlight brings nourishment

光り増し                                                       The light increases

洩れなく地上を照らす                                  Shining everywhere upon the earth

人々は得るべくもない                                  The people long for spring

春を望み                                                       Which they cannot have

見たかのごとく欣喜する                              And are as happy as if they saw it

臥したるドラゴン                                         The crouching dragon

鼻あらしを吹きつけながら 翔び立つ         Snorts out storms   and takes to flight

旗印したたる赤き                                         The crimson-dripping horizon

地平は彼のもの                                            Is his banner

風を前衛とし                                                An avant-garde wind

豪雨を従者として                                         Accompanies a heavy rain

そのするどき鞭                                            And that sharp whip—

すなわち稲妻のはじける音を浴びて          The lightning—bathes all in rumbling reverberations

大地は希望に喜び笑う                                      The earth rejoices and laughs with hope

臥したるドラゴン                                         O crouching dragon

われら 何ものか                                         What type of beings are we?

人知れず                                                       O, you unseen

まどろむ英雄よ!                                         Dozing hero!

今 いずこ                                                   Where are you now?

Transcending Time

                                              Tendō Taijin

A . . . . . . . . .O . . . . . . . . .U . . . . . . . . .E . . . . . . . . .I

A . . . . . . . . .O . . . . . . . . .U . . . . . . . . .E . . . . . . . . .I

A . . . . . . . . .O . . . . . . . . .U . . . . . . . . .E . . . . . . . . .I

Left hanging on the nodes of time, today’s leftover voices

Gathering them together, they clear the ears

Following a thought

Far beyond the Tsushima Straights,

Wishing for a home,

Pulled into the Mongol invasion of Japan,

My weapon is lost, having killed innocent civilians with the art taught to me

The unseen voices that have continued to be stifled

Have communicated, communicated to unknown people;

Deep in the silent bay the ships proceed

Moving toward a dead end, continuing to release

The echoes of voices silenced since the dim past, now reborn

When it’s cloudy, a selfless heart arises

Asking the universe, while firing my voice into it,

Once again repeating the question anew,

Interweaving it as I go

In the wind blowing from the mainland that erases all,

Still the voices cannot be heard, but gradually a shape appears

From a torii (sacred gate) surrounded by the sea






時の篩にかけられ 今日に残った声

拾い集め 耳を澄ます





器を失い伝える術を 絶たれた無辜の民たち




行き止まりに向かって 放ちつづけ

古代から封じられた響く声 今に甦らせ

曇天の時 無私な心で立ち

宙に問いつづけながら 撃ち込む声



大陸から吹きつけ かき消す風に

未だ聞こえぬ声 次第に姿現す



難民島へ                                     Refugee Island

          天童 大人                            Tendo Taijin

あの押し寄せる濁流のなか                                  Within the muddy current pressing forth

流されて行く物は                                                What is carried off by the flow—

あなたのもの 私のもの 誰かのもの                Is it yours? Is it mine? Whose is it ?

誰でも無いものが                                                It belongs to no one, but floats

連なって流れ 逃げ出している                           Together with the flow, escaping . . .

私のものあなたのものと思っていた                    What I thought was yours or mine

沢山の家財や家や車は                                         Are many household goods, houses, cars—

漂流するただの粗大ゴミ                                     Large drifting lumps of refuse and trash.

所有している                                                       “I owned them.”

所有できると信じていた                                     “I believed that they were mine!”

モノや土地は                                                       But those things and even the land

瞬く間に 母なる大地に還った                           In the twinkling of an eye, returned to Mother Earth.

日々の営みの絆が一瞬で                                     All the connections of day-to-day life, in an instant

幻と化したことを                                             Were transformed into an illusion.

誰もがすぐには信じられなかった                       Nobody could believe it at first.

すでにこの島の海岸線は消えている                    The voices of those who warned that this island’s

と警告していた者の聲は消され続けて来たが      Coastline would be erased were themselves erased,

本当に消されたのは 聞く耳を持たず                But now what was really erased are those who

見える世界だけを信じていた者たち                    Heard not and only believed what they could see.

ただの避難なら 時間が解決し                           If it was just a matter of escaping, time would solve

元に戻ることも出来るかもしれない                    Things, maybe bringing everything back as before.

未だに止めることも出来ない                              But even now we cannot stop the constant spread of

拡散し続けている福島原発の放射性物質は         Radioactive substances from Fukushima’s reactors

ただ累積していくだけ                                         that only continue to accumulate

除染などただの気休め                                         Decontamination is nothing more than a placebo.

洗い流した汚染水は                                            And the contaminated water that they spilled forth,

何処へ流れゆくのか                                            Where will it flow?

汚染された故郷には二度と戻れない                    “We cannot return to our contaminated villages.

いやもう生活出来ないのだ                                  It’s awful! We can’t eke out a living!”

と誰もが言わない 言えない                              Nobody says such a thing. Nobody can.

世界から難民の受け入れを拒否してきた             These small islands in the Far East that have

この極東の小さな島が                                      Refused to accept refugees from around the world

難民島に変わったこと                                         Have transformed into islands of refugees,

に いまだ誰も気がついてはいない                    Though until now   no one has recognized that.

もし世界の雛型が この東洋の小さな島なら      If the patter for the world is these small islands,

この世界はすでに瀕死の重傷                              Then this world is already dying from a grave wound.

原始からの力を保つ                                            Maintaining its power since Creation,

この星のマグマは                                                This planet’s magma

時折 癇癪玉を破裂させ                                   Sometimes   explodes and blows its top,

瞬時に多くのモノを                                            Instantly engulfing

繰り返しくりかえし                                            Many

飲みこみ                                                              Over and over—

無言の警告を発し続けてきた                              A wordless warning that it continues to express.

この星の地表に住む者たちは                              Those that live upon the surface of this planet

今も好き勝手に                                                   Now just as they please

自然を破壊しつづけている                                  Continue to destroy Nature.

この水の惑星に                                                   On this planet of water,

我々はいつまで                                                   For how much longer can we continue

安全に住み続けられるのか                                  To live safely?

もう誰にもわからないのだ                                  No one knows.

On One Kind of “Truth”   

Tendo Taijin

On this small watery planet, how many people

Are searching for the Truth, are continuing to search,

And is there anyone among them who can say

“Any Truth you find will not be the only Truth”?

All people, each individually, alone, and by themselves-

Why does the “Truth” of more than 6.6billion people

   continue to be ignored by Heaven,

While time slips idly by, simply passing away?

Transcending the color of skin or ethnicity, making borders disappear,

Sacrificing national profit,

Even though progress is slow, walking hand in hand,

Moving slowly forward-  Who is preventing this?

Though the century changes, the confusion persists;

The gods we trust in our hearts-though we continue to praise them loudly,

Hunger and strife do not disappear,

And nowhere can the light of hope be seen. Why not?

In this world, though there are more representatives for gods

    than the number of ethnicities,

If we cannot go beyond all conflict,

If we cannot save lives from hunger,

When “Light” of Truth can possibly shine?

Shall I ask it? When is the time of hope?

Standing before those who are starving and dying daily,

   can anyone save them with weapons or words?

It is but a single person who asks, the power of the spirit of only one:

Where are they, those who can save us now?

                                         Translated by Stephen Comee


                            天童 大人

























 ドゴン族の神 -アンマへ―

                     天童 大人































「 キッキ マニトウ!」

「 キッキ マニトウ!」

「 キッキ マニトウ!」と三度、奉唱せり!






To Amma, Guardian God of the Dogon People

by Tendō Taijin

I wonder if it can break through this clear blue sky—

Whatever was shining in the ancient firmament?

What was it that could be seen?

The sunken eyes of the elders here,

Wordless as ever,

From the top of a cliff, see something that seems to have survived. . . .

Encouraged by Cameroon poets

When I was invited into the center of this open space,

A transparent invitation arrived from the Sirian star system.

Turning around, way off in the distance,

Houses and wriggling people can be seen on the earth, like grains of rice,

Before the eyes, the elders sit in the center of a few dozen tribesmen who surround them.

This is Africa, the Republic of Mali,

The Sangha region, Bandiagara, atop the escarpment,

Where the Dogon people live.

Borrowing wooden staves from poets who had come from Rome,

With bended knees, three times they strike the stone slab,

From a low position, like crawling on the earth,

Their voices begin to resound: “A-a-a- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – a-h!

The ancient world of the Dogon I learned about

In Marcel Griaule’s Pale Fox

These are the people I have dreamed of seeing—the Dogon!

Even now, somewhere upon this earth,

Can anything still be passed down

About the distant star system of Sirius?

The voice of an Asian poet—who?—his voice continues to resound,

Without a single clearing of his throat, he turns toward the elders—

As he turns this time to face their guardian god, Amma,

A gust of cool wind caresses his cheeks.

Where is this? He turns around and soon intones:

Kitchee Manitou!

Kitchee Manitou!

Kitchee Manitou!” three times offering his voice.*

Three years later, a Moroni poet who saw him off at Senegal’s Dakar airport,

With a gentle smile, told him: “At that time, the Dogon elders

Perfectly comprehended what you said.”

It was a world in which one could converse in Divine words,

When languages from distant lands could be understood with ease, like before the time of the Tower of Babel.

Translated by Stephen Comee

on Mt. Koya, Japan’s sacred peak

*  Kitchee Manitou, also spelled Kitchi-Manitou, is the Creator God of the Algonquian nations of North America. The Anishinaabe (Ojibwa or Chippewa) people, Longfellow’s source, spell it Gichi-Manidoo, and the term means “Great Spirit.”


Tendo Taijin Anillo Azul De Ezra Pound – Poesía Japonés

Tendo Taijin with great Ida Vitale in Buenos Aires

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