メメント・モリ || Memento Mori

512nqbf46wlメメント・モリ
Memento Mori

Vocals: Chata (茶太)
Lyrics: interface
Composed by: bermei.inazawa
Album: The Borderline of Morning Glow (あさやけぼーだーらいん) 【Official Site】
Circle: Voltage of Imagination
Release date: 01/01/2007

Requested by: Fresh Pasta

Updated (17/04/2018): Various revisions as a result of further research and scrutiny.

Memento Mori, Latin for ‘Remember, You Will Die’.

This song is beautiful, and I can’t believe the album was released 11 years ago. I’ll be sure to pick this up very soon!

The lyrics themselves are quite… melancholy. The speaker isn’t necessarily talking to someone in particular, but してほしい in the chorus implies that they’re asking something of someone else. The command, literally translated, is ‘I want you to make it so there’s nobody here.’ I went with something that has a similar meaning but conveys it in far fewer words.


ドラマなんて無い ただ過ぎてゆく毎日
夢とか希望なんて 口にしなくなっていた
後悔なんて無い あるならただの勘違い
与えられた場所に満足 理解したつもりだった

dorama nante nai tada sugite yuku mainichi
yume toka kibou nante kuchi ni shinaku natte ita
koukai nante nai aru nara tada no kanchigai
ataerareta basho ni manzoku rikai shita tsumori datta

My days just passed by without drama.
I wound up not talking about such things as hopes or dreams.
I feel no regret. If I do, it’s just a misunderstanding.
I’m satisfied with the place that’s been given to me. I intended to appreciate it.

気が向くままに 緩やかな眠りについて
ふらふらになるまで たわいない夢を見ていた
だけど全然楽しくない なんだか息が続かない
空を飛んでいるような あの予感が来ない

ki ga muku mama ni yuruyaka na nemuri ni tsuite
fura fura ni naru made tawai nai yume wo miteita
dakedo zenzen tanoshikunai nandaka iki ga tsudzukanai
sora wo tondeiru you na ano yokan ga konai

I freely fell into a gentle sleep,
And I dreamed childish dreams until I grew dizzy.
Still, it’s not fun at all. It’s like… I can’t keep breathing.
Premonitions that feel like flying don’t come to me.

いつも キレイに見えていたのに
最近わリズムがずれてきた
いつの間にか 遠くに離れて
この手を伸ばしても ああ

itsumo kirei ni miete ita no ni
saikin wa rizumu ga zurete kita
itsu no ma ni ka tooku ni hanarete
kono te wo nobashitemo aa

Things always seemed so beautiful
but recently they’ve gone out of sync.
Before I knew it, everything was so far away,
And though I reach out, ah…

届かない 届かない もう触れられない
すれ違った感覚は たとえばくすんだ雪の色
純粋な空白は 存在を許されない
もう ここには 誰も居ないことにしてほしい

todokanai todokanai mou furerarenai
surechigatta kankaku wa tatoeba kusunda yuki no iro
junsui na kuuhaku wa sonzai wo yurusarenai
mou koko ni wa dare mo inai koto ni shite hoshii

I won’t reach. I won’t reach. I can no longer touch anything.
My mismatched sensations resemble the colour of dull snow.
The existence of a pure, blank space is not tolerated.
I want you to remove everyone from here.

この何もの無い 灰色の雪景色の中で
私は今もまだ 白い体をしているか
世界の全てが 押し寄せてきても
染まらない 真っ白な体をしているか

kono nanimo no nai haiiro no yukikeshiki no naka de
watashi wa ima mo mada shiroi karada wo shiteiru ka
sekai no subete ga oshi yosete kitemo
somaranai masshiro na karada wo shiteiru ka

In this empty, ashen landscape of snow,
do I still appear white?
Even if everything in the world advances on me,
Will I remain unstained, as white as snow?

戻れない 戻れない もう逃げられない
この吐きそうなめまいは たとえばくすんだ雪の色
何もない自分は 存在を許されない
どうか ここには 誰もいないことにしてほしい

modorenai modorenai mou nigerarenai
kono hakisou na memai wa tatoeba kusunda yuki no iro
nani mo nai jibun wa sonzai wo yurusarenai
douka koko ni wa dare mo inai koto ni shite hoshii

I can’t go back. I can’t go back. I can no longer run away.
I feel like I’m going to be sick. This vertigo resembles the colour of dull snow.
The existence of my empty self is not tolerated.
Please, I want you to remove everyone from here.

5 thoughts on “メメント・モリ || Memento Mori

  1. CE April 6, 2018 / 6:37 am

    What an unusual sound… I like it!
    It kind of reminds me of the music used in Death Billiards.

    Like

  2. Fresh Pasta April 6, 2018 / 6:46 am

    Hey Releska, realized I did some mistakes copying earlier while reading this again.
    In the second to last stanza, it’s “yukikeshiki” and “watashi wa ima mo mada” instead of just “keshiki” and “watashi wa ima mada” respectively.

    In the very first line, it’s also “sugiteyuku” and not “sugeteyuku”.

    So sorry about that, if I find more of them, I’ll report back. I might actually upload this one, since it’s a song worthy of on if I have ever heard one.

    That said, great work, I appreciate it a lot. These lyrics are wonderful!
    Now I hope you’re open for some criticism/thoughts as you always are. Japanese being the language it is leaves a lot open to interpretation and while I can’t really understand it, I think I can understand the thought process of it, so I thought I would speak my mind – if there’s more to it than my amateurish eyes can see, feel free to educate me.

    The first thing you talked about is the final line of the chorus(es)
    ここには 誰もいないことにしてほしい

    I personally think going ahead and saying the speaker wants to be erased might be a bit radical, since I could just as well see this meaning that she wants to be in a place free of humans (and perhaps their thoughts), although I personally definitely agree with your interpretation here. Still, I think you should try to preserve the meaning in the translation process in a way that interpretation is still possible, so I feel like you might be jumping ahead a little. I do realize though that finding the right words might be a bit tough. I can only suggest something like:

    “Make this a place free of anyone” or “Make ‘here’ a place free of people”… something like that anyways. I think this line is wonderful the way it was written, so sorry for being so picky. I think I’m just saying this because I love the way you interpretated it, but you can’t really see it if you put it so bluntly. Since the line is long, I don’t think it’d be bad if you translated it into a sentence that’s a little longer, too.

    Now, next up, I was thinking a lot about
    何もない自分は 存在を許されない
    and
    純粋な空白は 存在を許されない

    judging from the way you translated the line that comes afterwards, I got the feeling that in this line, the speaker might even be talking about herself not tolerating those things (and thus having a reason to want to be erased/commiting suicide in a way). With my limited knowledge of the Japanese language, I can’t tell whether this meaning is plausible here, but it feels like it to me? I wouldn’t want you to change the translation neccessarily since your version is very descriptive as in “It is not tolerated” could mean anything and thus not excluding the possibilitty the speaker is talking about herself. To concur with what I said earlier about the last one, your translation fits that anyways.

    And lastly, about
    届かない 届かない もう触れられない

    You already pointed it out in your introduction that the speaker isn’t really talking to anyone neccessarily, so I feel like the “you” is a little weird here. I’ve got little to no idea what else the speaker might be trying/wanting to reach and that’s probably why you came up with it, so I just wanted to point this out, too, rather than have you change it or anything.

    After writing all this I realized something that someone like you who has translated so many pages of lyrics probably has already spent countless thoughts on: How to translate Japanese lyrics in the first place. I guess there are different styles depending on how descriptive and interpretative you wanna be. Striking the right balance must be hard and honestly, in a way it probably boils down to personal preferation on a case-by-case basis, doesn’t it? So please, if you already thought of your own policy on this and decided that you want to follow a certain degree of interpretation as to make the meaning more “clear” to the reader, then feel free to keep going with that. I presume most people barely have a look at the source material when they are asking for you to translate something, so that definitely sounds very justifiable, too.

    Either way, would love to hear your thoughts about this. Sorry for the essay and as I said, I definitely appreciate your hard work, even if I might not have made it sound like it right now! Thank you a lot, these lyrics mean more to me than any other ones you’ve translated for me before 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • releska April 6, 2018 / 9:00 am

      Thank you so much for your detailed comment! I love digging deep down into a song and I think this one in particular really deserves it. Sometime over the next few days I’ll go through and make those changes to the romanisation. I’ll also go through and investigate those areas you pointed out – I went with an uncommon interpretation of ‘koko’ for the first one and I’d like to investigate further to ensure I’m being accurate. Based on what I find I’ll change those areas, but you can expect a more detailed comment when I do (^_^)

      Like

    • releska April 17, 2018 / 9:24 pm

      I took the time to properly look through this and do some more research, and I’ve summarised my thoughts in a few dot points:

      ここには 誰もいないことにしてほしい
      This was a tough one, and I still find myself wavering between the two options. I did some more research, though, and I don’t think I can fully back my first interpretation anymore. I went with what I went with because ここ can sometimes mean ‘I’, but upon researching further I discovered that in similar cases, it was only used to refer to a place (e.g. ‘here’). Having made that decision, I thought about how best to word that line. I went with a slight compromise, and interpreted it as ‘I want you to remove everyone from here.’

      Incidentally, I referred to another translation (https://www.animelyrics.com/doujin/chata/mementomori.htm) to see how they approached it, and they have the last line of the chorus as 知ってほしい rather than してほしい. I don’t have a copy of the lyrics to double-check, but if it’s the first one, it would change my interpretation of the entire chorus.

      存在を許されない
      This section uses the ‘passive’ voice. In other words, it’s the difference between ‘I/they do not tolerate it’ and ‘it is not tolerated.’ The first gives us a definite ‘doer’ of the action, whereas the second doesn’t, so my translation was deliberate. This implies that it’s the speaker themselves who is not tolerated by others, which I suppose may feed into their lack of tolerance for other humans. As you said, though, there is still the possibility that the speaker themselves does not tolerate themselves, and the ambiguity of the passive voice makes that really effective!

      届かない 届かない もう触れられない
      In this case, I linked the first line to the last line, which is where I got ‘you’ from. However, I did some more thinking, particularly about the nature of depression (which I think this song is about) and I revised my interpretation. I now think it makes more sense to go with something undefined – the ‘mismatched sensations’ could in fact relate to the speaker feeling mismatched with the rest of reality, supporting the new interpretation.

      I think that covers everything, but I really appreciated reading your comment. Though I translate a lot of things, I’m not perfect and I always love challenging my own understanding of things. Your comments allowed me to rethink parts of the song and led to what I hope is a better translation overall! m(_ _)m

      Like

      • Fresh Pasta April 19, 2018 / 5:53 am

        Hey again,

        re-reading the whole thing with the small changes you made and listening to the song again, I feel like the translation sounds a lot more coherent in the sense that all of the lines feel like they fit to each other better. I definitely agree with your interpretation and I can really find it in every line and I just love it (as I do the lyrics).
        I think you already said almost everything there was left to say, but as for the question of it being “知ってほしい” instead of “してほしい”, I doubt it. Listening to the song, it definitely doesn’t sound like there’s a big pause. I’d be really surprised if those were the lyrics that were intended.

        While the source I used might not be 100% reliable, that sentence is just so well-crafted that I refuse to believe it isn’t supposed to be what I think it is! 🙂

        I also quite like what you said about “存在を許されない”, since I feel like depression forming from not feeling accepted can start as just that, a feeling of denial/refusal from other people but grow into a feeling where you start refusing yourself. I’m not absolutely convinced this was intended and I feel like the former is the safer interpretation, but it’s interesting to me either way.

        Thanks a lot for your input and considerations, too. It made me like this song even more than I did before. I have a huge appreciation for these lyrics now, so thank you again for translating them for me.

        Liked by 1 person

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