Hiroshima: Three Witnesses / Edition 1

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Overview

"I'll search you out, put my lips to your tender ear, and tell you. . . . I'll tell you the real story—I swear I will."—from Little One by Toge Sankichi

Three Japanese authors of note—Hara Tamiki, Ota Yoko, and Toge Sankichi—survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima only to shoulder an appalling burden: bearing witness to ultimate horror. Between 1945 and 1952, in prose and in poetry, they published the premier first-person accounts of the atomic holocaust. Forty-five years have passed since August 6, 1945, yet this volume contains the first complete English translation of Hara's Summer Flowers, the first English translation of Ota's City of Corpses, and a new translation of Toge's Poems of the Atomic Bomb. No reader will emerge unchanged from reading these works. Different from each other in their politics, their writing, and their styles of life and death, Hara, Ota, and Toge were alike in feeling compelled to set down in writing what they experienced. Within forty-eight hours of August 6, before fleeing the city for shelter in the hills west of Hiroshima, Hara jotted down this note: "Miraculously unhurt; must be Heaven's will that I survive and report what happened." Ota recorded her own remarks to her half-sister as they walked down a street littered with corpses: "I'm looking with two sets of eyesthe eyes of a human being and the eyes of a writer." And the memorable words of Toge quoted above come from a poem addressed to a child whose father was killed in the South Pacific and whose mother died on August 6th—who would tell of that day? The works of these three authors convey as much of the "real story" as can be put into words.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691008370
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 2/7/1990
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 416
  • Product dimensions: 6.26 (w) x 8.66 (h) x 1.06 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix
Acknowledgments xi
Note on Japanese Names and Terms xiii
Introduction 3
Summer Flowers 19
Translator's Introduction 21
Summer Flowers 45
From the Ruins 61
Prelude to Annihilation 79
City of Corpses 115
Translator's Introduction 117
Preface to Second Edition (1950) 147
An Autumn So Horrible Even the Stones Cry Out 153
Expressionless Faces 165
Hiroshima, City of Doom 178
The City: A Tangle of Corpses 198
Relief 225
Wind and Rain 251
Late Autumn Koto Music 268
Poems of the Atomic Bomb 275
Translator's Introduction 277
Prelude 305
August 6 306
Dying 308
Flames 311
Blind 313
At the Makeshift Aid Station 315
Eyes 317
Warehouse Chronicle 319
Old Woman 323
Season of Flames 327
Little One 331
Grave Marker 334
The Shadow 339
A Friend 341
Landscape with River 343
Dawn 344
The Smile 346
August 6, 1950 347
Night 350
In the Streets 352
To a Certain Woman 353
Landscape 355
Appeal 357
When Will That Day Come? 358
Entreaty 366
Afterword 367
The Hiroshima Murals of Maruki Iri and Maruki Toshi: A Note 371
Glossary 379
Guide to Names and Places 381
Suggestions for Further Reading 389
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