Autumn II: 9



aki to ieba
sarademo mono no
kanashiki ni
yūkaze tachinu
takamato no miya
Speaking of the autumn,
Or even if we’re not, true
Sadness is in
The evening breeze
At the palace of Takamato.





monogoto ni
aki wa aware o
nao kagirinaki
yūmagure kana
About the autumn is moving
Without exception, but
Most of all, it is
The early evening.

The Provisional Master of the Empress Household Office.


The Right complain that ‘there is no specific linking expression in the poem with the palace at Takamato’; while the Left criticise the Right’s poem for ‘mentioning “everything” at the beginning, but then simply concluding with “early evening”.’

Shunzei’s judgement: while it is true that there is no specific link with ‘the palace at Takamato’ in the Left’s poem, is it not the case that it is a location redolent with sadness? The Right’s poem recalls ‘Everything/Is sadness/In the scarlet leaves’, and thus does not need to say more than this. However, we need to consider the concluding section ‘early evening’ (yūmagure kana). Just like ‘the palace at Takamato’, it lacks connection. The round must tie.

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