When he had gone to the province of Michinoku as its governor, he saw a withered pine tree at Takekuma, and had a sapling planted to replace it; after finishing his posting, he returned to the same province later, and saw the pine he had planted once more.
uesi toki tigiri ya si ken takekuma no matu wo Futatabi aFimituru kana
When I planted you Did I make a vow, perhaps? That Takekuma’s Pine once more I would encounter!
musubiken chigiri mo tsurashi kusamakura matsu yūgure mo yado o tanomite
Tangled Brief bonds are chill; With a grassy pillow She awaits the evening and A request for lodging.
Left and Right state together: both poems have only a faint conception of entertainers.
In judgement: both Left and Right have a ‘grassy pillow’ (kusamakura) and a faint conception of entertainers, as the Gentlemen have already stated. They seem to me to somehow resemble the poem by the Left in Round Nine. The Left’s ‘dewfall drops tangled’ (tsuyu musubioku) and the Right’s ‘brief bonds are chill’ (chigiri mo tsurashi) are both elegant. Once again, I make this a tie.
The Right state: the Left’s poem has no entertainers, or conception of love, either. The Left state: the Right’s poem lacks entertainers.
In judgement: it seems that the Gentlemen of both teams have already stated that both poems lack the conception of Love. However, they seem to me to both capture the conception of entertainers. The Right’s configuration and conception are fine. It should win, I think.
The Right state: ‘drifting boat’ (ukifune) fails to link properly with ‘single night’ (hitoyo). The Left state: although ‘diving girl’ (ama no ko) is used in the source poem in the section on pleasure girls in the Collection of Poems to Sing, we wonder about the appropriateness of simply using it to mean pleasure girl.
In judgement: there is no need to critique whether or not ‘drifting boat’ links with ‘single night’. In the final section ‘why so rarely’ (nado arigataki), though, makes me wonder why this should be the case! On the matter of the Right’s use of ‘diving girl’, our predecessors, including Lord Kintō, have provided poems on pleasure girls in the Collection of Poems to Sing, and who, indeed, would not utilize this? Furthermore, ‘knowing not with whom she’ll briefly sleep, and regret’ (tare to naki ukine o shinobu) certainly sounds like a pleasure girl! Thus, the Right must win over a pleasure girl finding it hard to get custom.
The Right state: the Left’s poem has no faults. The Left state: the Right’s poems contains a fault, does it not?
In judgement: What are we to make of the Left’s ‘In a clear glass my ever-changing reflected’ (masukagami utsushikaekemu)? While I have the feeling that there is a source for this poem, this aged official is completely unable to grasp it what it might be. It is not the case that the poem is lacking in an elegant style. The Gentlemen of the Left have commented on the existence of a fault in the Right’s poem. Perhaps the two cranes (tsuru)? This type of issue relating to a poem’s formal diction does not seem that serious to me. However, saying ‘does this so resemble her, that at’ (nite ya kakuran) is insufficient in terms of expression. The Left’s ‘clear glass’ would win, if its source were clear, but in its absence, it is difficult to make it the winner.
The Gentlemen of the Right state: the initial line of the Left’s poem sounds poor. The sense of the ending, too, is difficult to grasp. The Gentlemen of the Left state: we wonder about the appropriateness of changing oneself into a bed.
In judgement: both Left and Right refer to ‘a boar lounging in his bed’ (fusu i no toko), and it has been mentioned that the initial line of the Left’s poem sounds poor, and that its ending is difficult to grasp. There really are a number of unacceptable aspects to this poem, are there not, so I cannot add any further words to what has been said. The Right’s poem is not suggesting that one change oneself into a bed. It is saying that one should briefly become a boar, that one might dream briefly of love. How can one possibly see the dream of a boar lying asleep? It certainly seems inferior to ‘not envying a lounging boar’.
In judgement: both Left and Right use the image of ‘trees from the mountain deeps’ (fukayamagi), and neither is superior, or inferior, to the other in this, but I would have to say that the Left’s ‘though once branches lay atop each other I did hear…’ (tsuranaru eda mo ari to koso kike) is somewhat better than the Right’s ‘on bush-covered beaches, they are not…’ (hisaki naranedo).