都はるみ ~愛は花、君はその種子

The song “愛は花、君はその種子” sung by 都はるみ・みやこはるみ appears at the end of the Ghibli film “Only Yesterday”, directed by Isao Takahata. It is a Japanese cover of “The Rose” by Amanda McBroom.

I don’t know if I would have loved that song so much, hadn’t I seen the film. It’s only the ending film song but it accompanies a very moving scene that retrospectively gives a new dimension to the whole film. The emotion conveyed in this last scene only proves the great quality of Ghibli films that make them so different from any other anime films, in my opinion.

It is very hard, if not impossible, to find the original version (I mean, the version of the film) on YouTube. I have to link to a cover then… If you haven’t seen “Only Yesterday”, I hope you will have a chance to watch it and listen to the ending song!


やさしさを 押し流す
愛 それは川
魂を 切り裂く
愛 それはナイフ
とめどない 渇きが
愛だと いうけれど
愛は花 生命の花
君は その種子
  • やさしい means “tender”, “kind”. the “さ” ending nominalize it to “tenderness”
  • 押し流す・おしながす to wash away
  • 魂・たましい soul, spirit
  • 切り裂く・きりさく to cut off, to cut up, to tear to pieces
  • とめどない endless, ceaseless
  • 渇き・かわき thirst
  • 生命・いのち life. It is usually written 命・いのち
  • 種子・たね seed. Again, I think it is usually written 種・たね
挫けるのを 恐れて
躍らない きみのこころ
醒めるのを 恐れて
チャンス逃す きみの夢
奪われるのが 嫌さに
与えない こころ
死ぬのを 恐れて
生きることが 出来ない
  • 挫ける・くじける to be crushed, to be broken
  • 恐れる・おそれる to fear, to be afraid of
  • 躍る・おどる to pound (one’s heart)
  • 醒める・さめる to wake
  • 逃す・のがす to miss (an occasion)
  • 奪われる・うばわれる is the passive form of 奪う・うばう to snatch away, to dispossess, to steal
  • 与える・あたえる to give
長い夜 ただひとり
遠い道 ただひとり
愛なんて 来やしない
そう おもうときには
思い出してごらん 冬
雪に 埋もれていても
種子は春 おひさまの
愛で 花ひらく
  • 来やしない・きやしない ”やしない” is an emphatic negative form used after -masu stem
  • ~てごらん ”ごらん” is used after -te form of a verb to say “please, try to…”
  • 埋もれる・うもれる to be buried, to be covered, hidden
  • おひさま the sun
  • ひらく to spread out, to open up (for a flower)

The translation is very close to the original English one… I tend to like this version better but I am sure that I am influenced by the film which is one of my favourite Ghibli films.


From page 169 to 178.

We are beginning chapter 4 and have almost reached the middle of the book! In this chapter, Yasumasa has returned to work but pursues his investigation. There are a lot of words I didn’t know, especially at the beginning…

  • 分離帯・ぶんりたい I have no idea how to say that in English… On a road, the two directions are sometimes separated by a concrete railing or parapet, that’s 分離帯.
  • ボネット car hood (from “bonnet”)
  • 紙屑・かみくず paper scraps, paper waste
  • ひしゃげる to be crushed, to be squashed
  • 破片・はへん fragment, broken piece

坂口 Sakaguchi is the junior colleague from Yasumasa, he already appeared during Sonoko’s funeral.

  • 実況見分・じっきょうけんぶん on-the-spot investigation
  • 格段・かくだん special, exceptional
  • 緩やかな・ゆるやかな gentle, easy, slow
  • 居眠り・いねむり dozing, nodding off (I had totally forgot this word…)
  • 鑑識・かんしき forensics, crime lab (hard to remember…)
  • 鑑定・かんてい judgement, expert opinion
  • 損傷・そんしょう damage, injury (a word easy to guess thanks to the kanji)
  • 微量・びりょう minuscule amount
  • 含有・がんゆう contain, include
  • 元素・げんそ chemical element
  • 杓子定規・しゃくしじょうぎ a hard and fast rule, stick fast to rules
  • 極端・きょくたん extreme
  • 非番・ひばん off duty
  • 処方・しょほう prescription
  • 面食らう・めんくらう to be confused, to be taken aback
  • 釈然・しゃくぜん fully satisfied
  • 拘る・こだわる to fuss over, to be particular about
  • 警戒・けいかい vigilance, precaution
  • 免れる・まぬかれる to escape from, to avoid
  • 却って・かえって on the contrary, all the more, instead, rather
  • 陥る・おちいる to fall, to trap

I found the beginning of this part rather difficult, as every descriptive passage.

Once again, Kaga does not appear here but he is nonetheless present, and the reader knows that he is investigating, too.