Old Pond

Old Pond

Carpe Diem Vernacular, with a twist #1 the old pond

furu ike ya kawazu tobikomu mizu no oto

the old pond;
a frog jumps in —
the sound of the water

© Basho (Tr. R.H.Blyth


Our task is to translate this poem – except if you use a translator the poem ends up saying  the exact same thing because  furu ike ya kawazu tobikomu mizu no oto is the english version – so first I used a translator to change it back to Japanese Romanji .

古 池;
カ エ ル に ジ ャ ン プ-
水 の 音

Then I tried a variety of translators and these were the most coherent.

The old pond
mosquito catcher flops down
the sound of water

during the campaign
the sound of water

Using still another translator  the Japanese and English translation


Old pond; Jumping frog-the sound of the water


So my translation- with one of the translators the only word that actually translated was ancient, so I think I will chose that word.  I loved the” mosquito catcher.”  Flops down or jumping or a combination

ancient pond
the mosquito catcher jumps
the sound of water


Now my own ideas just imagining the scene.

forgotten pond
startled frog jumps
with a splash

algae covered pond
the sound of the frog
ducking into water


10 thoughts on “Old Pond

    Love the way you show up the shortcomings of mechanical translators and then give us your perfect own interpretation. such fun.
    Wonderful approach. Wish I had thought of it.

    Liked by 1 person

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