Category Archives: Personal Collections

Ise Shū 2

Even though the lady felt he was utterly heartless, she was moved to reply:

涙さへ時雨にそひてふるさとは紅葉の色も濃さまさりけり

namida saFe
sigure ni soFite
Furusato Fa
momidi no iro mo
kosa masarikeri
Ever my tears
Fall with the showers;
At my ancient home,
The lustre of the Autumn leaves
Is deepest of all.

and attaching it to a branch of privet, sent it to him. This must have been around the Ninth Month. The man read the poem and thought it extraordinarily moving.

GSS VIII: 459

Ise Shū 1

During the reign of the Kanpyō Emperor, a lady whose father was Governor of Yamato served in the retinue of the consort who had borne His Majesty children. Her father loved her dearly, and felt that he could not wed her to any ordinary man, so when the brother of the consort proposed marriage to her with great attentiveness, what was she to do but allow the union? Though the lady wondered what her father would say about it, he replied, ‘It must be the bonds from a previous life that have brought you to this fate, but young men are known to be unreliable…’ Years passed, and the man wed into the family of the man who was Major Captain at the time. The lady’s father heard of it and thought that, indeed, matters had proceeded as he had feared. While the lady was still in an agony of shame, a messenger came from the man’s household to the estate of her father near Gojo and, on a scarlet autumn leaf upon the fence, wrote:

人住まず荒れたるやどを來て見れば今ぞ木の葉は錦織りける

Fito sumazu
aretaru yado wo
kite mireba
ima zo ko no Fa Fa
nisiki worikeru
I live no more
At this overgrown house
I have come to gaze upon, but
Now, the leaves upon the trees
Weave a fine brocade.

GSS VIII: 458