Translation for Kimi no Egao / 君の笑顔

Kimi no Egao / 君の笑顔: “Your smiling face” or “your smile”

kimi / 君
“you”
no / の
A possessive particle indicating that the previous word modifies the next word (almost equivalent to “of”)
egao / 笑顔
“smile”, “happy face”

Edward posted yet another translation-of-a-translation a few days ago, and this time it’s Kimi no Egao / 君の笑顔.

I quote:

I had difficulty translating the lines marked with * because they read like fragmented sentences to me. Eventually I decided to post the translation because I didn’t see myself making any progress and I wanted to move to the next translation. For all I know maybe those lines were poetic sentence fragments all along.

To address that, I think they really are poetic sentence fragments. I see relatively few particles in the original Japanese, and particles in Japanese serve to indicate parts of speech. I’ll have to double-check with someone who knows Japanese to confirm this.

I have to say, Oku-san continues to impress me. The way she uses all four seasons in the first stanza is brilliant, among other things. This is typical Oku Hanako: I can’t find the words to express my awe. It’s simply beautiful.

Thanks, Edward!


Lyrics

Translation

When I met you there was spring light and a breeze in the street*
My childish heart cheered in the distant summer night of that day*
I neglected loneliness as I passed through the autumn day*
A warm winter street reassured me of your warmth*

At all times you have a sincere look in your eyes. Even if you fall you will stand up again
I drew some strength from your profile that only gazes ahead

Your smile and your voice created my future
The time that began to move carved out slowly changing days
I should be able to overcome difficulty at any time because I have a dream
Now I have found something precious, something that I want to protect

I don’t know the reason for your tears that day
Beyond the upset I saw a path leading to a dream

I’m not afraid of mistakes. If I take a step forwards then I can have more faith in myself
People look towards the other side of sadness. This is what the sight of your back has told me

At my side, by your side, I could cry with longing to live in the moment*
A dream without end must lead to somebody’s future
Don’t give up. Whenever I heard your voice
I found something precious, something that I want to protect
I am not alone. I am always by your side because I want to see your smile

Translation by Edward from the Chinese

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4 thoughts on “Translation for Kimi no Egao / 君の笑顔

  1. I always wanted to get a translation of this. The way I heard it, I thought it was the GUY who broke up with HER all this time. The way I felt it, I thought she was really socking to that loser mid-way through towards the end.

  2. Thanks for your opinion on the sentence fragments, tPenguinLTG! I look forward to hearing any confirmations you get on that. And I agree that the use of the four seasons in the first stanza is beautiful.

    • I had a hard time myself translating the sentence fragments in her other songs. I’ve come to realize that not all the lines will connect into full sentences—it is similar in English songs where the phrases are broken up to sound more poetic/”better” (think Bohemian Rhapsody!).

      From the Japanese, I would translate the first stanza as:

      The light of spring, a wind-swept street: that was when I first met you
      The distant summer nights of frolicking around with a young child’s heart
      The autumn that cheated loneliness as it passed by
      The warm winter’s street that reassured me of your warmth

      And then the first line of the last stanza:

      By my side, by your side, I want to live in the present so much that I could cry

      I understand that you translated this from Chinese; I’d be interested in seeing/comparing that version too since I can read some Chinese! 🙂

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