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29 May 2007


I photographed a woman that can be found on my website (www.bertteunissen.com) under number 23 in the “Japan” section. She was a professional haiku and tanka writer/artist, and after I photographed her, I asked her to write me a poem in my diary. This is the one she wrote for me.
She wanted to let me know that she understood and appreciated my work. They call this style of poem “TANKA.” It’s longer than a haiku, using five lines.

“Climbing the slope
invited by
a red dragonfly
I offer flowers
to the grave of my parents”

I like to think in the end, this poem is all about the journey to heaven in all its meanings.

The translation was made by Mr. Ban'ya Natsuishi, director of World Haiku Association. His generous efforts were arranged by Mr. Shuji Kogi, Secretary General of the EU-JapanFest (and Yoshiko's father).

Below are images of Mr. Natsuishi translating this tanka, and then he with his wife, Ms. Sayumi Kamakura. I am very grateful for everyone's help with this.

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