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ume sake ya ame no uguisu kuchi wo aku

plum blossoms--
the candy nightingale
opens his mouth

I originally translated the phrase, ame no uguisu, as "pampered nightingale." Shinji Ogawa informs me that it actually denotes a "candy nightingale" made of wheat-gluten. Candy vendors traditionally create various figures of sweet-gluten for children. Here, it seems that the candy bird is about to sing.

All translations © 1991-2010 by David G. Lanoue, rights reserved.