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Kudo Naoko / 工藤直子 – Ⅱ

Don’t Sleep, Gorillas           





Once upon a time

our gorilla-like ancestor

hauled himself up on his hind legs,

and said “Well?”

—What on earth did he want to see?

Was there something worth seeing?



what about his forelegs? Well, the forelegs

has grown weary,

and since then they do nothing but reach out for love.

—Did he really want to reach it?

Was it something he could ever reach?


And now

we descendants have in our bodies

a slight vestige of what it is to be a gorilla, a few grains of it left.

Overcome, we stare fixedly at our palms.

—Oh, look, how empty they are!

The wind will slip right through our fingers!


Now a prayer:

ancestor, ancestor, watch over the gorillas

inside us.

Open their eyes.

Now we’ll silently lower our forefeet.

—Our palms meet the ground

to hold up the world:

we bow.















うしろあしで やっとこさ と立ちあがり


—いったい何を 見たかったのか

見るべき何かが あったのか



まえあしは どうなった? まえあしは

それいらい まえあしは退屈して



掴めるもので あったのか



われら子孫の体内に ほそぼそ

ゴリラかたぎのつぶつぶ のこり

茫然と まじまじと 手のひらをみる

—おお このなんたる からっぽ!

指のあいだを 風がこぼれるよ


そこで お祈り

ご先祖さまご先祖さま わがうちなるゴリラを

みまもりたまえ 目ざめさせたまえ

われらいま まえあしを しずかにおろすところなり

—大地と 手のひらあわせ

地球を ささげ持つために