Cherry blossoms (桜 or Sakura) bloom only for one week. They full bloom then fall gracefully in a very short period of time. Such transient beauty became the symbol of how soldiers should act at critical moment during the World War II.
You and I are cherry blossoms of the same class,
Blooming in the campus of the same military school,
Once blooming, let’s be decisive to fall,
Gracefully, for the Country
同期の桜 or Cherry blossoms of the same class, a military song during the World War II
But in older days, people enjoyed Cherry blossoms much more peacefully. Its transient nature was interpreted differently.
Some projected uneasy feelings on them,
In this calm and peaceful spring sun light,
Cherry blossoms scatter, like my restless thoughts
百人一首 or the Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets, No 33 by Ki-no-Tomonori, 9th century
while others projected one’s passing youth on them.
Cherry blossoms have lost their glamour in vain,
During long rain, like me, wondering around for love
百人一首 or the Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets, No 9 by Ono-no-Komachi,circa 9th century
Cherry blossoms are also beautiful in mountains, blended with pale green color of young trees (山桜 or Yamazakura).
Oh, wild cherry blossoms,
Please have sympathy for me, as I have for you,
No one else knows me, other than you,
Deep in the mountains
百人一首 or the Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets, No 66 by Gyoson, Buddhist monk, 11~12th century)