In this month’s DK article for Kyoto Visitor’s Guide I included some information about the next meeting of the Japan International Poetry Society. However, as all articles are submitted two months in advance, sometimes details change – in this case for the better! At the next meeting on June 12th visiting Japanese poetry translator, Jeffrey Angles was originally scheduled to appear alone. However, leading indies poet Takako Arai is now due to appear with him. Presumably the event will now consist of a bilingual poetry reading and discussion. I’ve met Jeffrey; an entertaining chap and great talker, and he describes Takako Arai, as a “super fun, bright poet”, so prepare yourselves for an enjoyable session!
Takako Arai was born in 1966 in Kiryū City, Gunma Prefecture (Japan) to a family engaged in textile manufacturing, a traditional industry in Kiryū. She is a graduate of Keio University’s literature department. Her first collection of poetry, Haōbekki, was published in 1997. Her second collection, Tamashii Dance (Soul Dance), was published in 2007 and awarded the 41st Oguma Hideo Prize. An anthology of English translations of her poetry, Soul Dance, was published in 2008. You can read a very favorable review in the Japan Times here. Since 1998 she has been a contributor to, and eventually editor of Mi’Te, a journal featuring poetry and criticism. Arai also writes on language and folklore, and teaches Japanese language and culture to foreign students at Saitama University’s Center for International Exchange. You can read some of her poems here: When the Moon Rises; hear her read some of her poetry here; and read an fascinating interview with Arai by Jeffrey Angles here.
Dr. Jeffrey Angles is Associate Professor of Japanese Literature, Language and Translation Studies at Western Michigan University, where he directs the Japanese language program. He has spent numerous years working, studying, and lecturing in various Japanese cities. Dr. Angles’ body of work includes recent English translations of books by poets Ito Hiromi, Tada Chimako, and Arai Takako. His translation of Tada Chimako’s Forest of Eyes: Selected Poems of Tada Chimako, was recently awarded the Donald Keene Center’s 2009 Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission Prize for the Translation of Japanese Literature. Dr. Angles is currently on research leave here in Kyoto. Come and meet him and hear his poetry at Campus Plaza Kyoto on Saturday June 12th.
Venue: Campus Plaza Kyoto 13:00-16:00 Meeting room 1;
Admission: 1,000 yen;
Directions: Campus Plaza is 5-minutes away from JR Kyoto Station. Go out of the station to the north and turn left. Walk into the street between the Kyoto Station Building and the Kyoto Central Post Office. You can see BIC Camera on your left. Across the street is Campus Plaza Kyoto. Here is a map.
For further information contact: Keiji Minato: firstname.lastname@example.org or Jane Joritz-Nakagawa: email@example.com
Check the JIPS website for more details.
In other JIPS news Jane Joritz-Nakagawa’s fifth book of poems, incidental music is now on sale at Amazon.com AND (!!) I recently posted a review of Yoko Danno’s retelling of the Kojiki here. It is a rather good book – so do take a look!
Takako Arai & Jeffrey Angles will have another (free!) bilingual reading and talk at d-labo in Akasaka, Tokyo on July 16th. Click here for details: “The Soul of Poetry, the Soul of the Japanese Language: A Reading by Arai and Angles”