Tango Tuesday: More Than This

I rarely post about having fibromyalgia and being clinically depressed.  My blog is not about that.  Many of you will probably say, But Kanzen Honey, you write haiku, poems, musings. recipes….so who knows what your blog is about?

True. but it ain’t about my fibromyalgia and clinical depression.  There are people who do blog about those and I have found their journeys to be inspiring and strengthening.  Rarely do any complain.  Many will note their current condition but almost, only in passing.  They are not letting their condition define them, they are defining their condition.  They are continuing to move forward on that journey.  And that, is the answer! And my inspiration.

Last night I was talking with a friend who told me I was being too hard on myself – to put on one of my favorite danceable hip-shaking songs and dance.  My depression has jumped on me with both feet and I know it is time for an adjustment with my meds.  So that is the goal today and to studystudystudy!!!

I am also going to do as my very wise friend suggests and dance.  But not to one of those hip shaking songs.  No, I think a nice smooth ballroom tango to a long time favorite song that suits my mood at this time. Oddly, I was singing and humming this song and swaying while, of all things, I was grilling burgers and a nice fat Vidalia onion <grin>. My husband asked, “what is that song?  Sounds like a tango?”  I said, Roxy Music, Bryan Ferry, More Than This.  He gaped at me.  I sometimes forget he is 10 years younger and we have a world of difference between us at times.

After dinner, I played the video for him so he could see and hear Bryan Ferry. He said, “that is lovely but so sad”. I told him “no, not really. Bittersweet, wistful, mono no aware(the pathos of things), sunt lacrimae rerum et mentem mortalia tangunt (we know the pathos of things and mortal things touch our hearts)”. He groaned, Oh lord, Japanese AND Latin….But he understood.

Years ago, one sweet summer morning, I held this song in my head as I danced with the waves on a deserted NC beach.  Today I’ve pushed back the table and chairs  so after dinner tonight, we can tango. A nice smooth holding, swaying, gliding, dancing with the waves tango. Sometimes, one does not always dance to express joy. Sometimes one dances as a homage to people and places gone, “like a dream in the night”.

I could feel at the time
There was no way of knowing
Fallen leaves in the night
Who can say where they´re blowing
As free as the wind
Hopefully learning
Why the sea on the tide
Has no way of turning
More than this – there is nothing
More than this – tell me one thing
More than this – there is nothing
It was fun for a while
There was no way of knowing
Like a dream in the night
Who can say where we´re going
No care in the world
Maybe I´m learning
Why the sea on the tide
Has no way of turning
More than this – there is nothing
More than this – tell me one thing
More than this – there is nothing

Two Music Videos – Japanese

I’ve posted about World Order before – one of my favorite groups. Combine electronic music with hypnotic robotic movements to explore crass commercialism, mystic beliefs, boy meets girl fun, the power within you to change, and the newest, Last Dance. Genki Sudo, retired kickboxing champ and martial artist, is front man, singer, choreographer. Last Dance epitomizes “mono no aware” = the pathos of things, the sadness felt at the passing of an era. We see anti-nuclear protests, trees that survived the tsunami bolstered up in the midst of a massive mall, a segment on the beach with Fukishima Power plant in the background, depersonalized automated food/medicine/whatever production, and to me, most wistful telling of times in Japan, a stormy Fuji in the background showing the bare minimum view of the infamous Suicide Forest.

I love Japan, but I think most of you know this. Seeing Last Dance evokes the mono no aware in me – thinking of the Japan I knew 30 years ago and the changes but also, the things that stay the same. Knowing several engineers from Fukishima who are now based in the US, I look at this video and see the movement of the waves, the enveloping, the taking away in the dance movements. I know these men who have lost everything they hold dear.

I hope rather than make you sad, this video will remind us of how we on this Earth, are a family. From mudlides in Washinton, plane crashes, tsunamis – we all weep when we lose a loved one, are stirred to help, pray for those affected, and hope for a brighter future. The kindness of (un)strangers. Let us be kinder.

A lighter video – Change Your Life (forever) bespeaks the power within us to change, reinvent, improve our lives.

I hope you enjoy. I enjoy sharing!

Last Dance


Change Your Life (forever)

月見 tsukimi

bittersweet. harvest
of longing, loss and tears. I
weep as the moon sleeps.


mi ni shimu

dark night – quiet. sound
of cicadas a memory.
empty night – empty heart.

sunt lacrimae rerum

dead cicada lies
under fading crepe myrtle.
I stand. lone mourner.


invisible night
rain: darkness weeps – tears not mine
blind my drowsy eyes



Hanami 花見

partying Beneath Cherry blossoms, Isawa  Matabei  1624 - 1644      Cherry blossoms have been a cultural event in Japan for over a thousand years. Hanami (flower viewing) which usually means the cherry blossoms (sakura). From the end of March until about early May, sakura bloom in Japan. Okinawa usually gets the first blooming in February!

forecast      So important is hanami 花見, the weather reports also give a sakura-zensen 桜前線 (cherry blossom front). Because the blossoms are so fleeting, hanami planners carefully take note so they can plan their hanami activities. Outdoor parties and picnics abound everywhere there are cherry trees. There are even yozakura 夜桜 (night sakura) parties. Electric lanterns, lights, and paper lanterns are hung from the trees so the party and hanami can be fully taken advantage of.

hanami 2              hanami

I had my own personal hanami last Friday. At a local shopping area, a whole long line of fully blooming pink sakura drew me out of my car and wandering from one end to the other and back again. The wind had picked up a bit and pink petals were blowing everywhere. I am sure people thought me crazy as I walked, bowed, and laughed. When I returned home, I had pink petals all in my hair, they had drifted down into my blouse and stuck to my slacks.

Cherry blossoms have been a cultural event in Japan for over a thousand years. The cherry blossom holds much symbolism within Japan. According to the Buddhist tradition, the breathtaking but brief beauty of the blossoms symbolizes the transient nature of life; mono no aware 物の哀れ (literally, the pathos of things). In Japan, cherry blossoms also symbolize clouds due to their nature of blooming en masse. The traditional Japanese values of purity and simplicity are thought to be reflected in the form and color of the blossoms. The cherry blossom is also tied with the samurai culture, representing the fleeting nature of the samurai’s life and symbolic of drops of blood.

May the brief and breathtaking beauty of the sakura give you joy and a recognition of that we must be aware of how fragile and precious life is.


Kamogawa_hanami[1]     cherry trees

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