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Keshi no Hana


This is a piece of genre Jiuta in the style of Tegotomono from the Ikuta Ryû - 生田 School. Also Known As : The Poppy Flower. This piece was composed for Koto by the person Yaezaki Kengyo. This piece was composed for Shamisen by the person Kikuoka Kengyo in the year cir. 1830.

History (Tsuge Gen'ichi):

Keshi no hana ('The Poppy Flower') was written around 1830 by Kikuoka Kengyo of Kyoto, the most prolific composer of jiuta. Later this song was arranged as an ensemble piece for koto and shamisen by Matsuzaki Kengyo II (d. 1871). The text praises a beautiful courtesan who is likened to a lovely poppy flower. The piece begins with a short instrumental introduction and recitation of the first line, but is a typical tegoto-mono.

Poem (translated by Tsuge Gen'ichi)

How pretty
Is the poppy flower
Here in my hand.
When plucked
Its fragrance
Is unworldly.
But how pitiful
Once the petals
Have fallen.

Very jealous is the poppy,
A passionate flower of summer.
Yet it wilts easily
Under a rain of affection.
There is no need
To be ill at ease with me.
Just be unresisting,
Like a lovely Nara doll.

Te ni torite
mireba uruwashi
keshi no hana
shiori shioreba
nioi koobashi
hanabira no
chirinishi sugata
aware tomo


Rinki suru ki mo
natsu no hana
ame niwa moroki
fuzei ari
tare ni kigane wo
nannimo iwazu
jitto shite ina

Keshi no Hana appears on the following albums

Abe Keiko Record Set - 07 Ikeda Seizan II
Abe Keiko
Fascination of the Koto 4
Yonekawa Megumi Yonekawa Toshiko
    The original sangen version was composed by Kikuoka kengyo (1702-1847) and the koto part was added by Matuzaki kengyoo II (d. 1871). Accepting the burden of her sever life, a courtesan is symbolized by both a poppy flower and porcelain doll because of their beauty and fragility.

    The high-registered song phrases could be considered to represent the beauty of pitiful woman. The following musical points would interest listeners: the beginning part is song without the sense of meter, and neither the sangen nor the koto change tunings at all.

Ikuta Ryu Sokyoku Senshu Volume 06

Koto and Shamisen Gendai Meikyoku Shu 05

Sankyoku Home Practice - Shoden 2 Aoki Reibo II

Sokyoku Jiuta Taikei 35
Yonekawa Hiroe Yonekawa Toshiko

The International Shakuhachi Society - 2018