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Michinoku no mano no kayahara,
Omokage ni shite miyu
To iu mono no
(Michinoku is a place so far from here
But people say, I can see your shadow by thinking of you deeply)
This is a Japanese traditional poem by Kasano Iratsume from Manyo Book (ca. 1620-1750). Her life story is unknown, but her all 29 poems is the Manyo Book are for Otomo no Yakamochi who was working in the Royal Court. Kasano Iratsume was one of his lover at that time. Michinoku is very far from Kyoto where was the capital in Japan at that time, so people couldn't go there easily. But also this poem is concealed a meaning of "I cannot see you that often even you live very close to me". It is said that Otomo no Yakamochi had so many lovers in those days, and exchanging poems were very common.
The choir is set up as two grouops of Sopranos, Altos, Tenors and Basses. Group 1 sings this poen in Japanese and group 2 sings in English
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