Leaves of my Heart

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Leaves of My Heart

and selected works from The Tinkling of the Golden Bell collection


by Lady Takeko Kujo

Translated by Wayne S. Yokoyama


Born the aristocratic daughter of the 21st Abbot of the Nishi Hongwanji, during her lifetime she enjoyed immense prestige as a leading poet, writer, artist, and humanitarian. 

Leaves of My Heart was originally published as a series of essays in 1926, in the Yomiuri Shimbun, a major Tokyo newspaper. The essays shown herein are given in their original order, along with a good selection of poems from her Golden Bell collection.

No other book presents the warm, loving thoughts she wished to share with the world. It was her way of saying thank you to the universe of love that embraced her in her hour of need. With Leaves of My Heart, it is as if she were giving us a bouquet of Asoka flowers, saying, “Why the sad tears? Look up! There’s a wonderful world of love awaiting you in the twinkling of a star!”

Lady Kujo was a devout Buddhist who helped found the Buddhist Women’s Association and was an activist to help the poor, providing soup kitchens and free medical aid.

In this world of turbulence, Leaves of My Heart brings forth a deeper meaning and understanding of our lives through her words written over ninety years ago.