Tag Archives: dawn

Entō ōn’uta’awase 03

Round Three

Left (Win)


haru no yo no
akuru kasumi no
kore ya kamiyo no
koromo naruran
At a spring night’s
Dawn the haze around
Tatsuta Mountain—
Is this how in the age of gods
Raiment might have been?

Supernumerary Major Counsellor Moto’ie



kumoi o kakete
itari itaranu
yama no ha mo nashi
When, upon the morning haze
Draping from the clouds,
I turn my gaze, it
Spread out, and fails to reach,
Not a single mountain’s edge.

Nobunari, Senior Third Rank

Both Left and Right are difficult to tell apart, yet the Left’s ‘clothing of the Age of Gods’ would seem to be superior.

Entō ōn’uta’awase 01

Morning Haze

Round One

Left (Tie)


shiogama no
ura no higata no
akebono ni
kasumi ni nokoru
ukishima no matsu
At Shiogama
Bay uponn the tide-sands
With the dawn
Lingering in the haze are
The pines on Ukishima.

A Court Lady



haru no yo no
oborozukiyo no
nagori to ya
izuru asahi mo
nao kasumuran
A spring night’s
Misty moon—
Does it leave a keepsake in
The rising sun
Yet seeming hazed?

Ietaka, Junior Second Rank

Generally, for the judging of poetry, one chooses people who have been permitted to take this Way, who can distinguish the good from the bad among the reeds of Naniwa Bay and plumb the depths and shallows of the sea. And now I do so, when I have passed through the mulberry gate, but have no time for the Three Tiers and Nine Levels of Rebirth, or even for dipping into Tomi stream, and have but distantly heard the waves of Waka Bay these past sixteen springtimes, though I was wont, in the ancient blossom-filled capital, to string together a mere thirty-one syllables from time to time.

Though now I do not divert myself with this Way, Ietaka of the Junior Second Rank is a long-standing officer of the Poetry Office and a compiler of the New Ancient and Modern collection. His dewdrop life of almost eighty has begun to vanish now with the wind on Adashi Plain, but I thought to converse with him and just this once, debate over his deeply considered words and compare the configuration of his works. Thus, through the jewelled missives we exchanged, I had him assemble poems on ten topics by those from whom I am not estranged and write them down in pairs.

The numbers of such folk were not great, and among them are those who have only recently begun to have an interest in the learning the Six Principles. That the words of Shinobu’s sacred groves would be scattered by the wind and encounter hindrances here and there, I had thought, but in the end, I paid no heed to folk’s criticisms in order to avoid barriers on the path to rebirth. Among these, I match my own foolish compositions with those of Ietaka—it may not be an appropriate thing to do for the Way, but given our association, as ancient as Furu in Isonokami, I have done this out of special consideration for him.

Nevertheless, long ago I perused the poems of the Eight Anthologies from time to time, and they certainly have some spectacle about them, but yet many are now unclear. Indeed, among the poems of folk of modern times, over the past ten years I have not heard of even a single poem, for all that they are composed the same way, that it is possible to view as outstanding. Not only that, but as I approach my sixties and descend into my dotage, the signs of my own foolishness become increasingly apparent.

The first poem of the Left often wins, yet this has nothing remarkable about it. The Right’s poem, on the morning following a misty moonlit night, has a true link with the morning haze, and the sequencing of its diction and configuration are particularly charming. Nevertheless, the Left’s poem in the first round is in accordance with the matter, and I am thus not able to pick a winner or loser.


Sent when he had returned home from a lady’s house on a day when the snow was falling.


kururu mono to Fa
naFo uramesiki
asaborake kana
Dawn has broken, and
That dusk will come
I know for certain, but
Still, I hate
The morning light!

Fujiwara no Michinobu

A kuzushiji version of the poem's text.
Created with Soan.


Sent on the morning that the Sanjō Regent Junior Consort was presented at court.


okitsuru shimo no
kure matsu hodo no
sode o miseba ya
With dawn’s first light
The fallen frost
Vanishes away;
Waiting for the evening, for
Then would I show you my sleeves…

Former Emperor Kazan

A kuzushiji version of the poem's text.
Created with Soan.

SIS XIV: 912

When the Lay Priest Regent came to call and sent in to say that he was going to go away unhappy, because she had been slow in opening the gate.


Fitori nuru yo no
akuru ma Fa
ika ni Fisasiki
mono to ka wa shiru
Ever grieving,
Sleeping solo all night until
The gates of dawn do open:
What an eternity that is—
I wonder if you know!

The Mother of Michitsuna, Major Captain of the Right

A kuzushiji version of the poem's text.
Created with Soan.

SZS XVI: 994

Composed when he composed ten poems about the moon.


ima yori Fa
Fukeyuku made ni
tuki Fa mizi
sono koto to naku
namida otikeri
From now
Until the break of dawn
I shall not look upon the moon;
For no particular reason
My tears are falling.

Lord Fujiwara no Kiyosuke

A kuzushiji version of the poem's text.
Created with Soan.

Teiji-in uta’awase 37



natsu no yo no
mada mo nenaku ni
kinō kyō tomo
On a summer night,
Still sleep has eluded me,
When dawn breaks—
Is it yet yesterday, or today,
I wonder in confusion.




u no hana no
sakeru kakine wa
shirakumo no
ori’iru to koso
Deutzia flowers
Are blooming by the brushwood fence—
Clouds of white
Have descended there, I think—
How strange…


Teiji-in uta’awase 11

Ten Poems on the Third Month

Left (Tie)


kokoro akaneba
sakeru atari ni
yado ya karamashi
Seeing you and returning home
Leaves my heart unsated,
O, cherry blossom!
In the place where you do bloom is
Where I would borrow lodging…




shinonome ni
okite mitsureba
mada yo o komete
chirinikeru kana
At the edge of dawn,
When I arise to gaze upon
The cherry blossoms
Within the night’s span
Have they scattered!


The Right’s poem was just as His Majesty said: ‘It expresses affection for the blossom through gazing and gazing upon them.’ When it was suggested to him that the work produced by Lord Sadakata and Lord Noboru conveyed the same overall impression, he took his time to consider the matter, then said, ‘In that case,’ and made the round a tie.