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Tominos Hell

"Tomino's Hell" (トミノの地獄) was written by Saijō Yaso (西條八十) for his 27th collection of poems 'Sakin' (or, 'Gold Dust' in English) in 1919. There is a Japanese legend surrounding it which states it should only be read with the mind, and never out loud. It's uncertain how this rumor started, but it goes on to say that "tragic things (凶事) will happen" if you do.

The story used to be very popular on 2ch. Many users said that nothing happened after reading it and uploaded pictures and videos as proof, but there were also posts where the user did not come back to post any results.

If you were to read this out loud, it'd be better to do so in Japanese. An alternative, more accurate translation by David Bowles can be found here.



Tomino no Jigoku (Tomino's Hell)



Saijo Yaso




ane wa chi wo haku, imoto wa hibaku,

His older sister vomited blood, his younger sister vomited fire,

可愛いトミノは 宝玉(たま)を吐く。

kawaii tomino wa tama wo haku

And the cute Tomino vomited glass beads.


hitori jigoku ni ochiyuku tomino,

Tomino fell into Hell alone,


jigoku kurayami hana mo naki.

Hell is wrapped in darkness and even the flowers don't bloom.


muchi de tataku wa tomino no ane ka,

Is the person with the whip Tomino's older sister,

鞭の朱総(しゅぶさ)が 気にかかる。

muchi no shubusa ga ki ni kakaru.

I wonder whose blood is on it?


tatakeya tatakiyare tatakazu totemo,

Hit, hit, without hitting,


mugen jigoku wa hitotsu michi.

Infinite Hell's one road.


kurai jigoku e anai wo tanomu,

Would you lead him to the dark Hell,


kane no hitsuji ni, uguisu ni.

To the sheep of gold, to the bush warbler.


kawa no fukuro niya ikura hodo ireyo,

Fit as much as you can into the leather sack,


mugen jigoku no tabijitaku.

For the preparation of the journey in the familiar Hell.

春が 来て候(そろ)林に谿(たに)に、

haru ga kite soro hayashi ni tani ni,

Spring is coming even in the forest and the stream,


kurai jigoku tani nana magari.

Even in the seven valley streams of the dark Hell.


kago niya uguisu, kuruma niya hitsuji,

The bush warbler in the birdcage, the sheep in the wagon,


kawaii tomino no me niya namida.

Tears in the eyes of cute Tomino.


nakeyo, uguisu, hayashi no ame ni

Cry, bush warbler, toward the raining forest

妹恋しと 声かぎり。

imouto koishi to koe kagiri.

He shouts that he misses his little sister.


nakeba kodama ga jigoku ni hibiki,

The crying echo reverberates throughout Hell,


kitsune botan no hana ga saku.

The fox penoy blooms.


jigoku nanayama nanatani meguru,

Circling around Hell's seven mountains and seven streams,


kawaii tomino no hitoritabi.

The lonely journey of cute Tomino.

地獄ござらばもて 来てたもれ、

jigoku gozaraba mote kite tamore,

If they're in Hell bring them to me,


hari no oyama no tomehari wo.

The needle of the graves.


akai tomehari date ni wa sasanu,

I won't pierce with the red needle,


kawaii tomino no mejirushini.

In the milestones of little Tomino.

Image Origin

I Can No Longer Be a Bride

(click for expanded view)

The image associated with this story is a cropped version of a painting by Yuko Tatsushima (立島 夕子) entitled "I Can No Longer Be a Bride".

It was supposedly made after the artist became a victim of sexual assault.

The title refers to how, according to Japanese tradition, women who are raped often have ensuing difficulties with marriage and reputation due to the perception of them having lost their innocence.

Yuko's official Japanese website can be found here.

Credited to Saijō Yaso 
Originally uploaded on July 23rd, 2012