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"brothers"/"bratja", The English version sung by Vic, from the fan who wrote it.
Tobu Ishi
post Jan 30 2008, 07:20 AM
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((If you'd like to avoid my rambling, just scroll down to the lyrics! It's fine, truly. smile.gif ))

Three years ago, in the autumn of 2004, I got into a show called Fullmetal Alchemist. In Japanese, Hagane no Renkinjutsushi. I was fascinated by the world it presented, and particularly touched--as many fans were--by the beautiful choral theme in Russian that pervaded the show.

One day, not long after I'd finished watching the series, I was making chocolate chip cookies in my college dormitory kitchen and thinking about that lovely tune. Earlier that day, I had looked up some literal Russian-to-English translations of it, but they weren't really singable. Word-for-word translations usually lose a little of their flow in the process. Language is just like that.

While I was stirring my cookie batter and humming, I started to think up slight alterations to those lyrics I'd read, singable words that might hopefully still preserve the heart of the song. The first line that burst into my mind was, "Beautiful mother, soft and sweet...once you were gone, we were not complete..."

And the rest, I guess, is sort of Fandom History.

Except, of course, that these lyrics would never have become so popular without the help of Vic Mignogna, Edward Elric's English voice actor, and my friend Marianne, a budding voice actress in her own right. She liked the lyrics and showed them to Vic, and he liked them so much that he added them to his performance repertoire. It was such a kind-hearted thing for them both to do, and I'm flattered to this day.

Unfortunately, there's one double-edged sword in having a famous voice actor sing your song. Over time, the lyrics have become more associated with Vic than with me. This isn't his fault. He always credits where credit is due. The main problem, I think, is that I don't have my own website to post my lyrics for reference. But I can at least try to get them out there in their full form. Better late than never, right?

So here are the lyrics. The full version. (Vic accidentally left out the second half of Alphonse's verse.)

(And just to make sure I, like Vic, give credit where it is due, here are the original translations I used to write my own version. I could never have done it without them. (I don't, for the record, speak Russian--only English and Japanese.)
Full Literal Translations. For that matter, the original Russian version was composed by the venerable Michiru Oshima, and was sung by the childrens' chamber choir of the Moscow Music School.)

I have been amazed and touched to see the response to these lyrics. And I have been amazed at the way my simple words and Vic's wonderful voice have apparently touched so many FMA fans.

Thank you, everybody. God bless.


How can I repay you, brother mine?
How can I expect you to forgive?
Clinging to the past, I shed our blood
And shattered your chance to live

Though I knew the laws, I paid no heed
How can I return your wasted breath?
What I didn't know has cost you dear;
For there is no cure for death

Beautiful mother, soft and sweet
Once you were gone we were not complete
Back through the years we reached for you
Alas, it was not to be

And how can I make amends
For all that I took from you?
I led you with hopeless dreams
My brother, I was a fool

Don't cry for the past now, brother mine
Neither you nor I are free of blame
Nothing can erase the things we did
For the path we took was the same

How could I expect to call you wrong?
How could you be blamed for what we've done?
Both of us were fools in our desires
As we flew too close to the sun

Beautiful mother, soft and sweet
Once you were gone we were not complete
Back through the years we reached for you
Alas, it was not to be

My dreams made me blind and mute
I longed to return to that time
I followed without a word
My brother, the fault is mine

So where do we go from here?
And how to forget and forgive?
What's gone is forever lost
Now all we can do is live


A note to the moderators: Please don't merge this thread into the existing discussion thread? I'm trying to get the word out, and I'm afraid it will get lost in the eleven pages of posts about the song in general, Russian and English versions. Thank you! <3


The Restoring Earth Alchemist
Big Sister to Chiyo, Little Sister to Tokage, Edward to WrenchFreakWinry

An Appetite For Grief Dividing the Bones Elysium FULLMETAL FOLLY
Good Neighbors Jaybird Letdown Mater Familias Mea Culpa Play With Me
Rosarium Seven Years The Shadow of Him Some Assembly Required Wired Wooden

<3 The EdWin 100 Themes <3
She remembers the way her inexplicably riveted gaze slid unbidden
down the curves of his back, slowly, like honey. And she particularly remembers
the rush of prickly heat, the unfamiliar melting sensation that made her duck
her head to hide a blush that caught her entirely by surprise; as she realized
for the first time, in an entirely new way, that Ed was a

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post Aug 21 2011, 01:16 AM
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Oh my goodness, your English version is way better and actually fits with the songs vocals! I'll try to get my sister's band to sing it and record it. I hope she can do it since it's really good!

Thank you very much for this version <3

Choo choo!

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Posts in this topic
- Tobu Ishi   "brothers"/"bratja"   Jan 30 2008, 07:20 AM
- - edo little kid   oh !!! thank you very much   Feb 16 2008, 02:47 AM
- - greGer   I cry myself to sleep every night when I listen to...   Mar 3 2008, 11:55 AM
- - Anamy   Do you know if anyone has ever sung this version w...   Mar 4 2008, 10:51 AM
|- - TeaLovingDude   QUOTE (Anamy @ Mar 4 2008, 01:51 PM) Do y...   Aug 18 2011, 11:36 PM
- - MilesTailsPrower-007   Are you really the person who made the English ver...   Mar 31 2008, 04:24 PM
- - Jeneration   WHAT. You wrote the Englsh version to this song?...   Oct 26 2009, 07:38 PM
- - Misty- Nala   I have to agree with Jeneration: lyrics make this ...   Jan 12 2010, 12:03 PM
|- - ScarMySoul   That's pretty neat that your song got recogniz...   Feb 19 2010, 04:43 PM
- - MsLinn   Oh, my hero *_* Thank you! Sadly I don't k...   May 3 2010, 11:21 AM
- - fma_milan_freak   I shed brotherly tears when i heard this song for ...   May 18 2010, 02:02 PM
- - fmaexpert   LOVE. THIS. SONG. thanks for the lyrics!   May 18 2010, 02:10 PM
- - Full Metal SHORTY!!!   It is SUCH a pretty song I love it to bits!   Jun 13 2010, 02:14 AM
- - Sketchy   This song goes with the anime, without a doubt. I...   Aug 27 2010, 08:47 PM
- - sarahbn   Thank you for posting this, it really is a beautif...   Apr 20 2011, 05:26 PM
- - xScarlet   I heard vic's version of the song in English o...   Apr 20 2011, 07:54 PM
- - Rainshine   Uh, I forgot how utterly gorgeous this song is. Bo...   May 1 2011, 05:16 PM
- - TheDrummerWithTheAutoMail   Both versions have their own little touch to it th...   Jul 5 2011, 10:38 AM

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