Autumn III: 17



haru aki ni
tomeru yado ni wa
shiragiku o
kasumi no iro ni
ukabete zo miru
Long life’s
Blessings to this house:
White chrysanthemums
In pale blue haze
Adrift, I see…

Lord Suetsune.




kimi o omou
iwai ni kiku o
aki mo kagiranu
hana to koso mire
Wishing for my Lord’s
Long life, chrysanthemums
I have first plucked;
Not of autumn alone
Do these flowers seem!



The Right have no criticisms to make of the Left’s poem. The Left say that they do not feel the Right’s poem quite expresses all that it attempts to do.

Shunzei’s judgement: The Left’s ‘Long life’s blessings to this house’ (haru aki ni tomeru yado ni wa) must be a reference to the Hall of Longevity. What does ‘in pale blue haze adrift’ (kasumi no iro ni ukabu) mean, though? Even though sake is referred to as ‘flowing haze’, to simply say ‘in pale blue haze’ suggests that one is really referring to haze, itself. Left and Right have strengths and weaknesses and there is no clear difference between them.

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