Japan Literature Meta Translation

Two new translations

I’ve had two short pieces published on Granta’s website this month.

First, a short story by Yu Miri called ‘North Winds Blow the Leaves from the Trees.’

The first time we were allowed to visit our home was right in the middle of monsoon season; the roof on the second floor was showing a few leaks and all around grew a rainbow of mold: soot, light green, white, yellow, red, maroon, pink. The second time we were allowed back temporarily, the ceiling had fallen down and the floor beneath it was rotten and drooping, and animal feces of different sizes were scattered across the floor. I’d heard rumors that there were mice, weasels, raccoon dogs, raccoons and civets living in some of the houses in the exclusion zone, but when I saw a huge rat casually walk past with my own eyes, I realized: oh, we won’t be able to live here ever again.

The second is two essays by Hitomi Kanehara from her book of essays Paris Desert, Tokyo Mirage, about living in Paris.

When I went home that evening, I searched online for piercing jewelry and bought two each of segment rings, circular barbells, and labrets in different sizes. If I didn’t keep on doing something, doing what I believed in, I felt I might succumb to the window’s temptations. All the decisions I’d made up to this point were for the same reason. Dropping out of school, cutting myself, my eating disorder, all the drugs, my alcohol dependence, piercings, my writing, coming to France and leaving France, too, all of it was to keep myself away from the window. Without it all I would fall. Be smashed against the ground. I’d turn into mere pulp.