Tag Archives: fusuma

Winter II: 24

Left.

引きかくる閨の衾の隔てにも響きは變る鐘の音かな

hikikakuru
neya no fusuma no
hedate ni mo
hibiki wa kawaru
kane no oto kana
Drawn up beneath
The covers in my bedchamber, and
With them between
The echo is somehow different
When the bells chime…

Lord Sada’ie.

587

Right (Win).

雪の夜の思ふばかりも冴えぬこそ閨の衾のしるしなりけれ

yuki no yo no
omou bakari mo
saenu koso
neya no fusuma no
shirushi narikere
It is a snowy night
I know, yet
There is no chill:
The covers in my bedchamber
Have that effect!

Ietaka.

588

The Gentlemen of the Right state: why have the ‘bell’ (kane) here? The Gentlemen of the Left state: the Right’s poem has no faults.

Shunzei’s judgement: the Left’s poem, having the poet buried beneath his bedclothes, which alter the sound of the bell recollects a composition on the ‘bell at the Temple of Bequeathed Love’. Nevertheless, the Gentlemen of the Right have asked, ‘Why have the bell here?’, and they are right to do so. The Right’s poem, on how the feeling of cold on a chill, snowy night vanishes briefly, exactly conveys the ‘bedding’s effect’ (fusuma no shirushi). Thus, it is without fault. I must make the Right the winner.

Winter II: 23

Left (Win).

埋火のあたりの円居飽かぬ間は夜床の衾よそにこそ見れ

uzumibi no
atari no matoi
akanu ma wa
yodoko no fusuma
yoso ni koso mire
A charcoal fire-pit,
And friendly folk gathered around:
While I would not have it end
My night time bedding
Seems of little point!

Lord Kanemune.

585

Right.

片敷きの袖冴え渡る冬の夜は床に衾の甲斐も無きかな

katashiki no
sode saewataru
fuyu no yo wa
toko ni fusuma no
kai mo naki kana
Just my single
Sleeve is so chill
On this winter’s night,
The blankets on my bed
Seem to do no good at all…

Lord Takanobu.

586

The Gentlemen of the Right state: we wonder about the use of ‘bedding of little point’ (fusuma yoso ni)? The Gentlemen of the Left state: we find no faults in the Right’s poem.

Shunzei’s judgement: Both poems are on ‘bedding’ (fusuma), with the Left saying that it seems of little purpose at a gathering around a charcoal fire-pit, and the Right, that it seems to be thin when the cold comes. So, we go from it doing no good, even if you do have it on, to it being pointless when you are happy and warm. What point are these poems trying to make, I wonder? The Left should win.

Winter II: 22

Left.

伎倍人のまだら衾は板間より霜置く夜半の名にこそ有けれ

kiehito no
madarabusuma wa
itama yori
shimo oku yowa no
na ni koso arikere
The Kie folk’s
Motley-coloured coverlet:

From between the boards
The falling midnight frost has
Given that name to mine!

Lord Ari’ie.

583

Right.

冴ゆる夜は天つ乙女もいかならん風もたまらぬ麻手小衾

sayuru yo wa
ama tsu otome mo
ika naran
kaze mo tamaranu
asade kobususma
On this chill, clear night
The maidens of the Heavens, too,
How must they feel?
Unable to avoid the wind,
With only a meagre hempen blanket!

The Provisional Master of the Empress’ Household Office.

584

The Gentlemen of the Right state: we don’t understand the reference to ‘Kie Folk’ (kiehito). In response, the Gentlemen of the Left state: it occurs in the Man’yōshū. We have nothing more to say than that.

Shunzei’s judgement: although various remarks have been made about ‘Kie Folk’, and it has been said that it occurs in the Man’yōshū, it is not acceptable to simply say that and then say nothing more. It does appear to be something which it is acceptable to extract from the Man’yōshū and compose with, though. The Right’s poem, too, with its conception of frost falling on a ‘meagre hempen blanket’ (asade kobususma) is in a Man’yō style [fūtei]. It is also certainly the case that it is not unreasonable for the Left to have used ‘motley-coloured coverlet’ (madarabususma). The Round should tie.

MYS IV: 524

[One of] three poems sent to Lady Ōtomo of Sakanoue by Fujiwara no Maro, the Master of the Capital Offices.

蒸し衾なごやが下に伏せれども妹とし寢ねば肌し寒しも

mushibusuma
nagoya ga sita ni
puseredomo
imo to si ineba
pada si samusi mo
My ramie cloth bedding is
Soft, and beneath it
I lie, yet
My love, I sleep without you, so
My skin does feel the chill….

Fujiwara no Maro

Winter II: 21

Left.

厚衾和やが下は思やる心のみこそ夜をかさぬらめ

atsubusuma
nagoyaka ga shita wa
omoiyaru
kokoro nomi koso
yo o kasanurame
My piled bedding is
Soft, and beneath it
I am lost in thought;
Only those feelings
Come to me night after night…

Kenshō.

581

Right (Win).

いたづらに明くる夜をのみ重ぬれば獨り衾の床ぞさびしき

itazura ni
akuru yo o nomi
kasanureba
hitori fusuma no
toko zo sabishiki
Pointless
Dawn breaks night
Time and again;
A single blanket on
My bed is sad, indeed…

Nobusada.

582

Neither Left nor Right has anything to say.

Shunzei’s judgement: The Left’s ‘piled bedding’ (atsubusuma) is similar in style to the poems of the previous round. The Right’s ‘single blanket’ (hitori fusuma) is a comparable piece of bedding, but the configuration of ‘pointless dawn breaks night’ (itazura ni akuru yo o nomi) is elegantly beautiful [sugata yūbi ni kikoyu]. Thus I make the Right the winner.

Winter II: 20

Left.

重ねずは朱の衣何ならじ身を暖めよ麻手小衾

kasanezu wa
ake no koromo
nani naraji
mi o atatameyo
asade kobusuma
With no garments piled with
My vermillion robe
,
What good is it?
Come, warm my flesh,
O meagre hempen blanket!

Lord Suetsune.

579

Right.

冴ゆる夜の寒さも今はあらじかし朱の衾の厚く見ゆれば

sayuru yo no
samusa mo ima wa
araji kashi
ake no fusuma no
atsuku miyureba
On this chill, clear night
The cold now
You feel not, I think, for
With vermillion has your bedding
Grown thicker, it seems!

Lord Tsune’ie.

580

Both Left and Right say that the other’s poem is undesirable.

Shunzei’s judgement: The conception and diction [sugata kotoba] of the Left’s ‘come, warm my flesh’ (mi o atatameyo) and the Right’s ‘the cold now’ (samusa mo ima wa) have the Gentlemen of each team stated to be undesirable, but this is not sufficient criticism. Neither poem expresses enough. They are of the same quality.