Ware wa umi no ko
Ware wa umi no ko, shiranami no
Sawagu isobe no matsubara ni
Kemuri tanabiku tomaya koso
Waga natsukashiki sumika nare
Umarete shio ni yuami shite
Nami wo komori no uta to kiki
Senri yosekuru umi no ki wo
Suite warabe to narini keri
Takaku hanatsuku isono ka ni
Fudan no hana no kaori ari
Nagisa no matsu ni fuku kaze wo
Imijiki gaku to warewa kiku
I am a child of the sea
I am a child of the sea,
In the pine forest on the side where white‐crested waves hit hard
The poor house where the smoke of cooking stands
It is my nostalgic house
I was born and washed my body in the sea water
The sound of the waves was a lullaby substitute
The power of the sea coming from the other side of a thousand miles
I spent my childhood while sucking in my heart
In the smell of a shore reef that stimulates the nose intensely
It smells like a flower that never dies
Wind blowing in the pine forest
I hear that it looks like a great music
In 1910, after the Russo-Japanese War, “Ware wa Umi no Ko” was published in Jinjou shougakkou tokuhon shouka, a songbook for elementary school students at the time.
Since the policy of the Ministry of Education at that time was not to reveal the author, the song was treated as “author unknown” for a while, but in the Heisei era, it became a common theory that the lyricist was MIYAHARA_Kouichiro, based on the artifacts presented by the bereaved family.
The song is recognized as a vivid portrayal of a boy born in a fishing village with a strong body and a tough spirit, as is typical of Japan, a maritime nation. The original lyrics go up to number 7, and numbers 4 through 7 depict a military man active on the sea. That part of the song was cut by GHQ after World War II, and it also disappeared from textbooks for a long time because the old-fashioned wording was difficult for children to understand. It was not until 1958 that it was revived. Of course, numbers 4 through 7 were not re-recorded.
However, the song’s plaintive melody and lyrics are still very popular today, and of course it was selected as one of the “100 Best Japanese Songs.
*MIYAHARA_Kouichiro, who wrote the lyrics, was born and raised near Sakurajima, Kagoshima Prefecture.