When I Was at my Most Beautiful and other poems 1953-1982 by Noriko Ibaragi


A university graduate girl
married into an old country family,
abandoned her chance to study abroad,
their first-born son was so lovely,
                                              cheep cheep.

A university graduate housewife
with sparkling stainless steel knowledge,
changes baby's nappy, discusses Jean Genet,
pastes its book name on the saltpot,
                                                 cheep cheep.

A university graduate woman,
she's in tears over New Year,
swamped by villagers, red lacquer ware,
saké pots to warm, delicacies prepare,
                                                      cheep cheep.

A university graduate mother
cycles through wheat fields,
become quite substantial, I'll say!
Run for village councillor? Well, why not,
                                                         cheep cheep.