Nagori-yuki (なごり雪)


Last week I learned a new Japanese word “syuusetsu”. It literally means “last snow”, the last snow of the season: not winter, but the beginning of spring. Spring came, the weather is getting warmer, but one day it suddenly becomes cold and it starts snowing... the snow is called 終雪.
先週日本語の新しい単語「終雪」を勉強しました。これは文字通り「最後の雪」という意味で、冬ではなく、春の始めに降るシーズン最後の雪のことです。春が来て、気候が暖かくなり、でもある日突然寒くなって雪が降り始める……この雪が終雪と呼ばれます。

There is a similar, beautiful word “nagori-yuki”. The meaning is the same as syuusetsu, but I like nagori-yuki better. Nagori means “traces”, but this word often has a nuance of “miss someone or something”. Thus, nagori-yuki is snow which misses the passed winter, or, it describes a feeling of a person who sees the snow and misses the winter that's passed.
これとよく似た美しい単語に「なごり雪」があります。意味は終雪と同じですが、私はなごり雪の方が好きです。なごりとは跡のことですが、この言葉はよく「何か/誰かを恋しく思う」ニュアンスを持ちます。ですので、なごり雪は過ぎた冬を恋しく思う雪、または、雪を見て過ぎた冬を恋しく思う人の感情を表します。

Also, there is a Japanese famous song titled nagori-yuki. This is an old song, released in the 70s (before I was born!), but this is one of my favorite songs. There is a deep, nostalgic story in this song. The lyrics are beautiful, and the refrain is sad and heart-aching.
また、なごり雪というタイトルの有名な歌もあります。70年台(私が生まれる前!)にリリースされた古い歌ですが、一番好きな歌の一つです。この歌には深い、郷愁を誘う物語があります。歌詞は美しく、そしてそのリフレインは悲しくて切ないです。

I found a video of this song on YouTube, so I'm going to share you the link. The singer is not the original one, however, this version is beautiful enough.
YouTubeでこの歌の動画を見つけたので、リンクをシェアします。オリジナルの歌手ではありませんが、このバージョンも十分美しいです。
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eliU3I2nDJA

A friend of mine asked me the meaning of the lyrics. It's a bit difficult to understand the lyrics even for Japanese people because these are close to a poem. So I’m going to try to explain the meaning.
友達の一人が歌詞の意味を聞いてきました。 この歌詞は詩に近いので日本人にとっても少し理解しづらいです。なので意味を説明してみます。

There are two people in the lyrics, a young guy and a young girl. They, at least he, were too young to realized their love to the other. But at the time she leaves, he finally realized his own heart. That’s why he suddenly found that she had become much more beautiful than last year. Nagori-yuki is falling as though it is missing the past season, and he misses the past years when she has been close to him.
この歌詞には2人の人物、若い男と若い女の子が出てきます。彼ら、少なくとも彼は若すぎて彼らの相手への愛に気づいていません。しかし彼女が去るとき、彼はついに自分の心に気が付きます。だから彼は突然彼女が去年より美しくなっていたことに気づくのです。なごり雪は過ぎた季節を恋しがるかのように降り、彼は彼女が身近にいた年月を恋しく思います。

The below sentences are a part of the lyrics including the main part.
以下は歌詞のメインパートを含む歌詞の一部です。

なごり雪も降る時を知り(なごりゆきも ふるときを しり)
なごり雪 knows the time when it should fall.
-> なごり雪 seems as though overlapping his feeling.

ふざけすぎた季節(きせつ)のあとで
After the seasons that they have acted like children,
-> They would have spent a long time together, but they have not realized their love to the other. They have just spent the time like children.

時が行けば幼い君も大人になると気づかないまま(ときがゆけば おさないきみも おとなになると きづかないまま)
I didn’t know that the little girl would grow up after the time passed,

(the main part)
今春が来て君はきれいになった(いま はるがきて きみはきれいになった)
去年よりずっときれいになった(きょねんより ずっときれいになった)
Now spring came, and you have become beautiful.
You have become much more beautiful than last year.
-> A new, hopeful season came, and he suddenly realized his love. He found that she had become much more beautiful than last year. But just at the time, she left.

Well, my English might not be good enough to describe the worldview😅
うーん、私の英語力はこの世界観を表現するには足りないかもしれません😅

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