neya no itama mo
ame mo namida mo
tokoroseki made All alone, and
The boards above my bedchamber
Fail to come together;
Until with raindrops and tears both
I am excessively…
fukaki yo no
nezame ni nani o
akatsuki no ame Late within the night,
I start awake; what
Was in my thoughts?
Beating against my window is
The dawntime rain.
The Right state: we cannot grasp the sense of the Left’s use of ‘until’ (
made). The Left state: the Right’s poem is certainly not easy to understand on hearing.
In judgement: is not the use of ‘until’ (
made) simply because it is appropriate to conclude a poem with that syllable? I can see nothing problematic with the use of ‘beating against my window’ ( mado uchisusamu) in the Right’s poem. Thus, I make the Right the winner.
furikuru ame mo
nuru tote sara ni
itowazaramashi All is darkened by
The falling rain, but
Were that to be you, my love,
I would be drenched, but
It would not be unwelcome!
toko ni shimo nado
shizukata ni sosoku
akatsuki no ame Sleeping solo
In my bed, so why
Is there the sound
Of quiet dripping
The Right state: while the Left’s poem does have a desirable sentiment, its expression is outrageous. The Left state: why, indeed, should there be a sound in the poet’s bed?
In judgement: the Left’s desirable sentiment is perfectly commonplace in poetry. The Right, with ‘dawntime rain’ (
akatsuki no ame), is elegant. The poems are comparable and tie.
tu no kuni no
toba ni aFimimu
koto wo nomi koso In the land of Tsu,
Nothing is in my heart;
In Toba, would I meet
You and that is all!
naFasiro midu ni
tanaka no sato no
yamabuki no Fana So, they have bloomed;
Among the waters of the seedling beds
Do I see the light;
At the dwelling among the rice-fields
Of the kerria blooms.
sato tōmi yamada no io wa inazuma no hikari no moru o tomo to miru kana Far from home In the mountain fields a hut By lightning’s Light is drenched, Which we watch together.
Higo, from the Residence of the Kyōgoku Regent
kazuragi ya kokage ni hikaru inazuma o yamabushi no utsu hi ka to koso mire In Kazuragi Amongst the shadows of the trees flashes Lightning: A hermit struck Flame, does it seem to be…
yo no naka no hakanaki hodo ni kurabureba nao inazuma mo hisashikarikeri This mundane world’s Transitory length: By comparison Even the lightning Does last for ever…
me mo karezu mamoru yamada no inazuma no hikari ni furete tada narazu miyu Still fresh to my eyes, The mountain fields I ward By lightning’s Light are brushed, and Appear again anew.