All posts by temca

MYS II: 220

A poem composed by Lord Kakinomoto no Hitomaro on seeing a dead man among the rocks of Samine Island in Sanuki Province.

玉藻よし 讚岐の國は 國柄か 見れども飽かぬ 神柄か ここだ貴き 天地 日月とともに 滿りゆかむ 神の御面と 繼ぎて來る 中の水門ゆ 船浮けて わが漕ぎ來れば 時つ風 雲居に吹くに 沖見れば とゐ波立ち 邊見れば 白波さわく 鯨魚取り 海を恐み 行く船の 梶引き折りて をちこちの 島は多けど 名くはし 狹岑の島の 荒磯面に いほりて見れば 波の音の 繁き濱べを 敷たへの 枕になして 荒床に 自伏す君が 家知らば 行きても告けむ 妻知らば 來も問はましを 玉桙の 道だに知らず おぼぼしく 待ちか戀ふらむ 愛しき妻らは

tamamo yosi
sanuki nö kuni pa
kunikara ka
miredömo akanu
kamukara ka
kököda taputoki
amëtuti
pitukï tö tömo ni
tariyukamu
kamï nö miomo tö
tugitekuru
naka nö minato yu
pune ukete
wa ga kögikureba
töki tu kaze
kumowi ni saku ni
oki mireba
töwinami tati
pe mireba
siranami sawaku
izana töri
umi wo kasikomi
yuku pune nö
kadi pikiworite
wotiköti nö
sima pa opokedö
na kupasi
samine nö sima nö
arisomo ni
iporite mireba
nami nö to nö
sigeki pamabe wo
sikitapë nö
makura ni nasite
aradökö ni
koropusu kimi ga
ipe siraba
yukitemo tukemu
tuma siraba
ki mo topamasi wo
tamapokö nö
miti dani sirazu
obobosiku
mati ka kopuramu
pasiku tumara pa
Jewelled seaweed,
Province of Sanuki:
Is it your nature that
The sight of you will never sate?
Is it that your guardian god
Is paramount?
With heaven and earth,
And sun and moon,
May you endure.
Toward one divine face,
We continue on our journey,
Out the rivermouth at Naka,
Floating in our boat.
As we come rowing,
The seasonal wind
Blows from the distant sky;
From offshore, I see
The crashing breakers;
I see the coast,
Among the roaring white caps;
Hunting whales
The sea, I fear it.
Our bobbing boat,
Warps its oars.
All around
There are many islands, yet
On the famous
Isle of Samine,
On the rocky, wave-wracked sea coast
We make landfall and see
Among the waves’ sound
Ever on the seashore,
A folded mulberry-cloth
Pillow have you made,
On a rough and rocky bed
You lay down:
If I knew your home
I would go and tell them;
If your wife knew
She would come inquiring;
Jeweled spear straight
Your path, though she knows it not;
Worriedly,
Is she waiting, loving you
That darling wife of yours

Lady-in-Waiting

The woman in question was an uneme, a beautiful woman brought from the provinces to serve at court. The poems hint obliquely that she may have killed herself, and the fact that she left a husband, and uneme were forbidden to marry suggests a reason.

MYS II: 217

A poem composed by Hitomaro, Lord Kakinomoto on the death of a lady-in-waiting from Tsu in Kibi.

秋山の したへる妹 なよ竹の とをよる子らは いかさまに 思ひ居れか 栲繩の 長き命を 露こそば 朝に置きて 夕は 消ゆといへ 霧こそば 夕に立ちて 朝は 失すといへ 梓弓 音聞く我れも おほに見し こと悔しきを 敷栲の 手枕まきて 劍太刀 身に添へ寢けむ 若草の その嬬の子は 寂しみか 思ひて寢らむ 悔しみか 思ひ戀ふらむ 時ならず 過ぎにし子らが 朝露のごと 夕霧のごと

akiyama nö
sitaperu imo
nayotakë nö
töwoyöru kora pa
ikasama ni
omopiwore ka
takunapa nö
nagaki inöti wo
tuyu kösö ba
asita ni okite
yupupe pa
kiyu tö ipe
kiri kösö ba
yupupe ni tatite
asita ni pa
usu tö ipe
adusa yumi
otö kiku ware mo
opo ni misi
kötö kuyasiki wo
sikitapë nö
tamakura makite
turugi tati
mï ni sope nekemu
wakakusa nö
sono tuma nö ko pa
sabusimi ka
omopite nuramu
kuyasimi ka
omopi kopuramu
töki narazu
sugi ni si kora ga
asa tuyu nö götö
yupugiri nö götö
As autumn mountains
Tinged with scarlet were you, maiden,
A pliable bamboo,
Supply bending, lady,
Of what
Were you thinking?
A rope of hemp
Should stretch your life long;
The dew
Falls with the morning
And with the evening
Vanishes, ’tis said;
The mist
Rises with the evening
And with the morn
Is lost, ’tis said;
As a catalpa bow,
The rumours, I, too, heard them, and
Saw you only briefly.
How sad:
As folded linen,
Pillowed on your arm,
A well-honed sword,
His body by yours in sleep,
As young grass,
Is your husband.
How lonely must he be ?
With thoughts of you will he sleep,
Grieving;
Fondly feeling,
It was not your time,
And you are gone, oh lady,
As is the morning dew,
As is the evening mist.

Nakisawa Shrine

Nakisawa Shrine lies in present day Nara Prefecture in Ki no Moto in Sakurai City. It is dedicated to the goddess Nakisawame (Weeping Marsh Woman) who sprang from the tears shed by the god Izanagi (creator of Japan) on the death of his wife, Izanami.