Everything in italics is in English in the original.
--supacat

 

Fuminshou no nemurihime
("Insomniac Princess")
Music and lyrics by Miyavi
English translation by supacat

Anonymous A: "Better die beautiful than live ugly!"

Could be, but something's off
Don't let your dead words out
"Virgin in the morning, whore at night," stubborn, full of spunk
Come on, if you're a lady, be a lady and stick up your middle finger (yay, death portrait)

Anonymous B: "Wolves live, pigs die."

That so? You freak cherry dick, you would say that
"Saliva from your eyes, tears from your mouth, milk from your nose"
Grovel to the back of my high heels

Anonymous C: "Better to be tricked than be a trickster . . . "

Why don't you quit your tragic heroine act?
Your pumpkin carriage isn't coming to get you
Pick up the ends of your dress and start running maiden

During your ceremonial break up with your sacred guy
A bright red dress
Out-of-place make up
And add on, don't you think those cheap tears are a bad idea?

Why don't you fall asleep with the taste of my crotch in your mouth

Like that

Princess of Insomnia

Translator's notes: Ahahahaha. Where do I start?

It's hard to explain what's great about this song, because there's a lot of fun and crazy mixing of boy and girl language in the original that doesn't come across in English at all. Fuminshou plays around with genderfuck a lot, and to be honest, I don't think I understand all of it. But I'll try my best.

First, a quick explanation of a language difference between English and Japanese. Unlike in English, men and women use different words and different styles when they speak Japanese. There is "woman's Japanese" and "men's Japanese". The two never get mixed. Occasionally, girls (especially younger girls) will use male Japanese but it sounds very rough and aggressive (and they don't mix in feminine words at the same time). Men never use women's Japanese at all (unless they are a transvestite).

This song is mostly written in feminine Japanese. It is very, very girly. It sounds, by and large, like it's sung by a woman. It sounds like the Princess of the title is singing the song to someone else (rather than having the song sung to her). Except that every now and again, an incredibly masculine word or phrase is thrown into the mix. At first, I thought it was simply that some lines were said by a girl, and some lines by a boy. But it's not as simple as that, because some of the lines have girly/boyish language mixed in the same sentence.

While I was trying to figure out whether it was EG a guy's crotch or a girl's crotch in the last line, it was suggested that person talking in the song was a transvestite.

This could be true. Lines like "bow down before my high heels" and "bright red dress, out of place make up" click more with a transvestite. Even the line "something's off/weird/suspicious" said in such a girly way might suggest that something's suspicious about the femininity.

Even if it's not as simple as "this song is about a transvestite/sung by a transvestite" or "Miyavi IS the insomniac princess!" it is true that Miyavi is putting himself into a very gender-confusing place when he sings this song, using a voice that is terribly girly with hints of something very masculine glimmering underneath.

Here are the lyrics with the genders "coloured in" so that you can see what I mean:

Black = gender neutral (perhaps very slightly more likely to be said by a woman)
Red = feminine (definitely said by a woman)
Blue = masculine (definitely said by a man)

Anonymous A: "Better die beautiful than live ugly!"

Yeah, but something's off
Don't let those dead words out
"Virgin in the morning, whore at night," stubborn, full of spunk
Hey, if you're a lady, be a lady and stick up your middle finger (yay, death portrait)

Anonymous B: "Wolves live, pigs die."

That so? You freak cherry dick, you would say that
With "saliva from your eyes, tears from your mouth, milk from your nose"
Grovel to the back of my high heels

Anonymous C: "Better to be tricked than be a trickster . . . "

Why don't you quit your tragic heroine act?
Your pumpkin carriage isn't coming to get you
Pick up the ends of your dress and start running maiden

During your ceremonial break up with your sacred guy
A bright red dress
Out-of-place make up
And add on, don't you think those cheap tears are a bad idea?

Why don't you fall asleep with the taste of my crotch in your mouth

Like that

Princess of Insomnia

Line notes: Sometimes, the words Miyavi sings differ from the written Japanese. Tastes good but something's off: Miyavi sings okashii wa, "something's off" (well, okashii has a broad meaning that stretches from wrong/off/suspicious to funny/laughable, but it means funny strange rather than funny haha). However, in the written lyrics Miyavi uses the kanji for oishii (delicious) instead of okashii (strange). "Something's delicious."

Dead words: This is a translation FAIL for the word "shigo" which is literally "dead" (shi) "words" (go) but also means either archaic words like "thou / thee", or slang which it's not cool to use any more, like, "rad" or "sick".

Yay, death portrait: Both words are pronounced iei, iei (yay, yay). The first yay is written in katakana, iei denoting the English "yay". The second yay is written in kanji and has the meaning "death portrait". The world's most random pun? I think it also links back to the first line "die beautiful" --like, you should take your death portrait while flipping your middle finger, yay.

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