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28078Noh - a collection, 4...featuring a water dragon for the New Year

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  • art_fetish
    Jan 1, 2012
      Today's chorus song is from 'Haku Rakuten'. This poem was written around the 14th century for Noh theater. I selected this particular chorus song to feature because it features a water dragon...and 2012 is the year of the water dragon. In this poem a Chinese man is sent by the Chinese courts to influence and destroy Japanese art. Along they way he meets two fishermen one of whom is actually the God of Japanese poetry. Ultimately the God begins a dance, and the wind from his swaying sleeves sends the Chinese boat with its passengers back across the ocean: thereby protecting Japanese arts from Chinese influence.

      For the drums- the beating waves.
      For flutes - the song of the sea dragon
      For dancer - this ancient man
      Despite his furrowed brow
      Standing on the furrowed sea
      Floating on the green waves
      Shall dance the Sea Green Dance.

      Source: 'The Noh Plays of Japan' by Athur Waley

      You can find this book online for free reading at Google Books.
      -Lady Kimiko