Moriya Sen’an

Hear about Moriya Sen'an on Episode 17A of our Podcast, the Japan Archives.

Moriya Sen’an

Moriya Sen’an was a Japanese poet, known to have written specifically jisei (death poems).

We know that he died in 1838 (Edo Period), but sadly not much more is known. His death poems often included a humorous note to them and the one below he even included his name as a kind of pun within the poem.1

Japanese text
Romanized Japanese
English translation
我死なば
酒屋の瓶の
下にいけよ
もしや雫の
もりやせんなん
Ware shinaba
sakaya no kame no
shita ni ikeyo
moshi ya shizuku no
mori ya sen nan
Bury me when I die
beneath a wine barrel
in a tavern.
with luck
the cask will leak.

Footnotes

1. Hoffman, Y. (1986) ”Japanese Death Poems: Written by Zen Monks and Haiku Poets on the Verge of Death”. Tuttle Publishing.

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Moriya Sen'an