In the fifty years since the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, countless victims have recorded the tragedy and the effect on their lives in tanka poems. Yet, few outside Japan are aware of these emotional reminders.
Dr. Jiro Nakano has selected and translated into English one hundred of these five-line verses, published along with kanji and romanji versions.
This is a most excruciating and convincing portrait of war painted by ordinary people in poetry, begging us to listen to their voices and to learn.
“Outcry from the Inferno thrusts the reader into the midst of the horrors experienced by those who suffered the effects of the explosion of the atomic bomb at Hiroshima. The collection testifies to the expressive power of the tanka form. The best of these pieces suggest, with a few quick strokes, narratives that expand in the reader’s mind into stories of surprising richness and complexity; while, at the same time, communicating anguished cries from the heart that transcend the details. Shinoe Shoda’s poem is a good example of how Outcry from the Inferno confronts us with images that speak volumes.” — Joe Stanton, poet and Director of University of Hawaiʻi Center for Arts & Humanities
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