Japanese women: a point-counterpoint in Meiji poetry

First up, we have DOI/TSUCHII Bansui (土井晩翠), with "Woman of Japan" (日本の女性):

Chastity like the smiling scent of plums
That bloom amid the falling snows of harsh winter;
Honor like the perfume of the thoroughwart
That grows in valleys secret, deep and dark,
Achievements shining like a pure white gem
In pools embraced by waves of ocean blue.
Ah, you, your deeds supreme and yet unseen,
Ah, you, your honor great and yet untold,
Ah, you, your chastity, complete, unknown,
Our very nation has its source in you,
In tears and sadness and chastity and love,
Ah, you, your strength, o gentle womankind.

Ahem. To rebut, we have ISHIKAWA Takuboku (石川啄木) with "Afternoon in my Study" (書斎の午後):

I do not like this country's women.
On the pages, rough to the touch,
of a half-read book from overseas,
I slip and spill some wine, but
it never quite sinks in: this sadness.
I do not like this country's women.

Enigmatic, and entirely unfriendly. Which poet has the stronger case? Only you can decide, while preventing forest fires.

(Personally I think women suffered enough during the Meiji restoration without having poems like this written about them, but then again, I'm not a poet.)

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Takuboku, eh? I haven't read a lot of his poetry, but I have played around off and on for several years now with doing an online Romaji Nikki. Never manage to stick with it long enough for it to amount to anything, though.

Anyway, I've a question: Have you ever seen the text of Kawabata's "Palm Stories" online anywhere? I've been looking around here and there but no luck thus far. (When I translate I like to have the Japanese on the screen and then maul...er, massage it into English gently.)

Cheers. (Eighty-what days to go now?!)


Yeah, some people scoff at the extremely weak encryption of just using Roman characters to write his diary, but I find it far, far too annoying to read much of for very long.

As for the Kawabata, nope, and I've looked! He hasn't been dead long enough to be out of copyright, and I guess his books are still selling pretty regularly for the publishers so they'd have an interest in making sure they didn't remain online for long, even if some enterprising soul put them up..

What -I- want to read are the stories he wrote for girls' magazines early in his career.

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