Tanikawa Shuntaro

About Mr. Tanikawa (taken from Wikipedia):

Tanikawa reading “I Am Me, Myself”

Shuntarō Tanikawa (谷川 俊太郎 Tanikawa Shuntarō) (born December 15, 1931 in Tokyo CityJapan) is a Japanese poet and translator. He is one of the most widely read and highly regarded of living Japanese poets, both in Japan and abroad, and a frequent subject of speculations regarding the Nobel Prize in Literature. Several of his collections, including his selected works, have been translated into English, and his Floating the River in Melancholy, translated by William I. Eliott and Kazuo Kawamura, won the American Book Award in 1989.

Tanikawa has written more than 60 books of poetry in addition to translating Charles Schulz‘s Peanuts and the Mother Goose rhymes into Japanese. He was nominated for the 2008 Hans Christian Andersen Award for his contributions to children’s literature. He also helped translate Swimmy by Leo Lionni into Japanese. Among his contributions to less conventional art genres is his open video correspondence with Shūji Terayama (Video Letter, 1983).

He has collaborated several times with the lyricist Chris Mosdell, including creating a deck of cards created in the omikuji fortune-telling tradition of Shinto shrines, titled The Oracles of Distraction. Tanikawa also co-wrote Kon Ichikawa‘s Tokyo Olympiad and wrote the lyrics to the theme song of Howl’s Moving Castle. Together with Jerome Rothenberg and Hiromi Itō, he has participated in collaborative renshi poetry, pioneered by Makoto Ōoka.

The philosopher Tetsuzō Tanikawa was his father.

Poetry by Tanikawa:

Something Lost

To Be in Love



This Person’s Already

One of the Days Before Eventually Returning to the Soil




2 Responses to Tanikawa Shuntaro

  1. Pingback: Battleaxe | Lost/Found in Translation

  2. Pingback: Edits to previous posts… | Lost/Found in Translation

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