2007-04-08

Flower Power.

There's another reason why I'm discussing flowers today. Easter today just happens to coincide with Buddha's birthday and the accompanying festival is 花祭り (hana-matsuri=the flower festival). My school will celebrate the birthday a month from now, so I'll discuss it in greater detail then.

Meanwhile, let's chat about some flower idioms:

言わぬが花 (Iwanu ga hana) Literally translated as "Not speaking is the flower." It means, "Some things are better left unsaid; Silence is golden."

高嶺の花 (Takane no hana) Literally translated as "Flower on a high peak." It means, "something out of one's reach." Some things are beautiful to look at, but realistically, there is no way you can get them. The objects might be something that you want very much but can't have them.

花に嵐 (Hana ni arashi) There is a famous Japanese saying, "月に群雲、花に嵐" (Tsuki ni muragumo, hana ni arashi = Clouds over the moon, a storm over blossoms)." This idiom is a shortened version. It means that life often brings misfortune at the time of great happiness.

隣の花は赤い (Tonari no hana wa akai) Literally translated as "The neighbor's flowers are red." It means that "the grass is always greener on the other side."

話に花が咲く (Hanashi ni hana ga saku) To have a lively discussion.

花を持たせる (Hana o motaseru) To let someone have the credit for.

花と散る (Hana to chiru) To die gracefully.

両手に花 (Ryoute ni hana) To have a double advantage, to be between two pretty women.

I've used this last one often, to great success. So next time you want to impress someone, give them flowers and throw in one of these idioms. (花を咲かせる (Hana o sakaseru) To succeed.)

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