Tag Archives: Jien

Love VII: 4

Left.
年月ぞ思かひなく過にける君をきませの山のふもとに

toshitsuki zo
omou kainaku
suginikeru
kimi o kimase no
yama no fumoto ni
For many years and months
I yearned to no end,
Passing time
Calling you on Kimase
Mountain’s foot.

Lord Suetsune.
967

Right (Win).
吉野山戀のあまりに思入ぬなかなかさらば人や訪ふとて

yoshinoyama
koi no amari ni
omoi’irinu
nakanaka saraba
hito ya tou tote
As Mount Yoshino
Is my love’s extent,
So deeply do I feel it;
But were I to do so,
Perhaps he would visit me there?

Nobusada.
968

Both Right and Left together state the opposing poem has no faults to indicate.

In judgement: in the Left’s poem, would it really be to no end to pass the time calling on Mount Kimase? The Right’s poem, on Mount Yoshino, has ‘but were I to do so’ (naka saraba), which sounds charming. Thus, the Right wins.

Love VI: 28

Left.
限りなき下の思ひの行衛とて燃えん煙のはてや見るべき

kagirinaki
shita no omoi no
yukue tote
moen kemuri no
hate ya mirubeki
Without limit is
My secret love:
Does it lead to
Burning smoke
For her in the end to see?

Lord Sada’ie.
955

Right (Win).
藻塩燒く浦の煙を風に見てなびかぬ人の心をぞ思ふ

moshio yaku
ura no kemuri o
kaze ni mite
nabikanu hito no
kokoro o zo omou
Seaweed salt burning
On the shore, smoke
Sighted in the wind;
No trails from her
Heart to me, alas…

Nobusada.
956

The Right state: the Left’s poem lacks smoke. The Left state: saying ‘sighted in the wind’ (kaze ni mite) sounds poor.

In judgement: the poem of the Right, which the Gentlemen of the Left have said ‘sounds poor’, has as its central section ‘sighted in the wind’, which I feel sounds extremely pleasant. The final section also sounds good. Thus, the Right wins.

Love VI: 24

Left (Win).
深き夜の軒の雫をかぞへても猶あまりぬる袖の雨哉

fukaki yo no
noki no shizuku o
kazoetemo
nao amari nuru
sode no ame kana
Late at night,
From my eaves the droplets
I number up, but
Still much more drenching
Is the rainfall on my sleeves.

A Servant Girl.
947

Right.
雲とづる宿の軒端の夕ながめ戀よりあまる雨の音哉

kumo tozuru
yado no nokiba no
yū nagame
koi yori amaru
ame no oto kana
Closed in with cloud,
From my dwelling’s eaves
I gaze out in the evening;
Overwhelming my love
Is the sound of rain…

Nobusada.
948

The Right state: the Left’s poem has no faults. The Left state: we do not understand the Right’s poem at all.

In judgement: the Left’s poem commences with ‘late at night’ (fukaki yo no) and then continues with mention of raindrops – this sounds extremely effective. The Right’s poem, too, starts ‘closed in with cloud’ (kumo tozuru) and concludes with ‘the sound of rain’ (ame no oto kana), which sounds charming, but because the poem is said to be ‘incomprehensible’ or ‘grating on the ear’, despite being one with both a significant conception and an unusual sound, there is no reason for me to shoehorn in my own views, even if much has been overlooked, so this round I will leave it at, the Right is entirely incomprehensible and the Left without fault. Thus, the Left wins.

Love VI: 17

Left.
いつも聞く物とや人の思らむ來ぬ夕暮れの秋風の聲

itsumo kiku
mono to ya hito no
omouramu
konu yūgure no
akikaze no koe
Always do I hear
The same, is that what
He thinks?
This evening, when he has not come
Whispers the autumn wind.

A Servant Girl.
933

Right (Win).
心あらば吹かずもあらなん宵宵に人待つ宿の庭の松風

kokoro araba
fukazu mo aranan
yoiyoi ni
hito matsu yado no
niwa no matsukaze
If you have any pity,
Then I would not have you blow
Night after night
While I wait for him, through my home’s
Garden pines, o, wind!

Nobusada.
934

Both Left and Right state: we can grasp the sense of the opposing poem.

In judgement: I am unable to tell what it is that ‘does not come one evening’ (konu yūgure). ‘Whispers the autumn wind’ (akikaze no koe) is also perhaps rather novel. The Right’s ‘Garden pines, o, wind!’ (niwa no matsukaze) sounds pleasant. It should win.

Love VI: 9

Left.
戀わびて心空なる浮雲や行衛も知らずはてはなるべき

koi wabite
kokoro sora naru
ukigumo ya
yukue mo shirazu
hate ha narubeki
Suffering with love
My heart is as the sky-bound
Drifting clouds:
In some unknown place
Is where it will end…

Lord Kanemune.
917

Right (Win).
戀死ぬるよはの煙の雲とならば君が宿にやわきてしぐれん

koi shinuru
yowa no kemuri no
kumo to naraba
kimi ga yado ni ya
wakite shiguren
Should I die of love, and
Final smoke
Clouds become,
To your dwelling will I
Drift and descend?

Nobusada.
918

The Right state: does the Left’s poem really expresses the love of drifting clouds? The Left state: the Right’s poem is more suited to the topic of ‘Love and Smoke’.

In judgement: with regard to the Left’s poem, Lady Sagami’s poem from the Eishō Imperial Palace Poetry Competition: ‘Before I know it/In my heart, sky-bound/is my love’ (itsu to naku/kokoro sora naru/wa ga koi ya) would be a good prior example, but this poem inserts ‘drifting clouds’ (ukigumo ya), which is illogical. As for the Right’s poem, ‘To your dwelling will I drift and descend?’ (kimi ga yado ni ya wakite shiguren) sounds fine. Thus, and for this reason, the Right wins.

 

Love VI: 5

Left (Tie).
やすらひに出にしまゝの月の影我涙のみ袖に待てども

yasurai ni
idenishi mama no
tsuki no kage
wa ga namida nomi
sode ni matedomo
Reluctantly
Emerged and left
That moonlight shape;
Though my tears, alone,
Upon my sleeves do wait…

Lord Sada’ie.
909

Right.
をろかにも思やるかな君もゝしひとりや今宵月を見るらん

oroka ni mo
omoiyaru kana
kimi mo moshi
hitori ya koyoi
tsuki o miruran
Heedlessly
Do I wonder
Whether maybe she, too,
Is alone this night
And gazing at the moon…

Nobusada.
910

The Right state: we cannot grasp the sense of the Left’s poem. The Left state: we are unable to understand the reason for the Right’s use of ‘heedlessly’ (oroka ni mo).

In judgement: while both poems do appear to have some conception, the Gentlemen of both Left and Right appear to have stated that they are unable to grasp it. Far be it from me to provide an interpretation in the light of this, so I shall follow the Gentlemen’s remarks and make this round a tie.

Love V: 30

Left (Tie).
故郷を出でしにまさる涙かな嵐の枕夢に別れて

furusato ni
ideshi ni masaru
namida kana
arashi no makura
yume ni wakarete
My home
I left in floods
Of tears;
The wild wind round my pillow
Breaks us apart in dreams…

Lord Sada’ie
899

Right.
東路の夜半の眺めを語らなん都の山にかゝる月影

azumaji no
yowa no nagame o
kataranan
miyako no yama ni
kakaru tsukikage
Upon the eastern roads
All night I turn my gaze –
Tell him that,
O moonlight, sinking
Toward the mountains round the capital!

Nobusada
900

Both Left and Right say they find no faults.

In judgement: the Left starts with ‘My home I left in floods’ (furusato ni ideshi ni masaru) and concludes with ‘the wild wind round my pillow breaks us apart in dreams’ (arashi no makura yume ni wakarete) – this is a form of words the quality of which I am entirely unable to convey with my own clumsy expressions, but the Right’s ‘O moonlight, sinking toward the mountains round the capital’ (miyako no yama ni kakaru tsukikage) is awash with a sense of tears, so it is most unclear which should win or lose. Both truly seem to reflect the conception of this topic ‘Love and Travel’ well. The poems have been so good every round that my brush is drenched with this old man’s tears, and I can find no other way to express it.

 

Love V: 21

Left (Win).
重ねずと思ふばかりぞ小夜衣匂ひは袖に移りぬるかな

kasanezu to
omou bakari zo
sayogoromo
nioi wa sode ni
utsurinuru kana
No piled robes, but
All I do is long for her:
Her night-robe’s
Scent upon my sleeves
Does dwell….

Lord Suetsune
881

Right.
匂ひ來る梢ばかりを情にて主は遠き宿の梅が枝

nioikuru
kozue bakari o
nasake nite
aruji wa tōki
yado no mume ga e
The scent drifting
From the treetops is my only
Consolation, for
Their master is as far away
As his dwelling’s plum blossom branches…

Nobusada
882

The Right state: the Left’s poem lacks any faults to indicate. The Left state: is the Right’s poem not composed upon the plum blossom of the house next door?

In judgement: for the topic of ‘Nearby Love’, poems composed where the lovers are in the same room are most likely winners. Even so, how close do their dwellings need to be? The Left’s latter section, ‘Her night-robe’s scent upon my sleeves’ (sayogoromo nioi wa sode ni) is certainly elegant. The Right’s poem has ‘Their master is as far away’ (aruji wa tōki). Simply because of this, it is certainly not composed on plum blossom. Still, the Left’s ‘night-robe’ (sayogoromo) seems a little superior to ‘The scent drifting from the treetops is my only consolation’ (nioikuru kozue bakari o nasake nite).

 

Love V: 18

Left (Tie).
戀しとは便りにつけていひやりつ年は返りぬ人は歸らず

koishi to wa
tayori ni tsukete
iiyaritsu
toshi wa kaerinu
hito wa kaerazu
I love you,
I put in a letter, and
Sent it off;
The years have gone by, but
He has not returned.

A Servant Girl
875

Right.
遥かなり幾草枕結びてかその下紐の解けんとすらん

harukanari
iku kusamakura
musubite ka
sono shitahimo no
token to sururan
A great distance –
How many times pillowed on the grass?
Tied tight
My under-belt –
I wonder when I will undo it?

Nobusada
876

The Right state: the Left’s poem seems comic. The Left state: the initial line of the Right’s poems does not seem to have much to say.

In judgement: I wonder if it really is comic? It’s just a poem in one particular style. The conception of the poem ‘I do not await / The new year, yet it is here; / The Winter plants’ is especially charming. As for the Right, the Gentlemen have stated that the first line ‘has nothing much to say’, but I feel it is appropriately placed. Furthermore, I wonder what to think about the final ‘my under-belt’ (sono shitahimo), but, then again, the configuration of ‘How many times pillowed on the grass’ (iku kusa makura) is evocative. The poems are comparable, and again, they tie. Alas, my judgement here suggests I know nothing of poetry. It is most difficult when one realises how times have changed. How sad it is…

Love V: 10

Left (Tie).
年を經て遂に逢べき中ならば齢ばかりを歎かざらまし

toshi o hete
tsui ni aubeki
naka naraba
yowai bakari o
nagekazaramashi
If the years go by, and
Finally, that we meet
Should come to pass,
Just our youth
Should not be a source of grief!

Lord Suetsune.
859

Right.
比べ來し振分髪のそのかみも終の思やなを遊びけん

kurabekoshi
furiwakegami no
sono kami mo
tsui no omoi ya
nao asobiken
We did match
Our hair, bunched on either side:
Back then,
That, at last, our passions would
Join – I wonder, did we know it?

Nobusada.
860

The Right state: the conception of youth is lacking. The Left state: the initial part simply resembles the original poem.

In judgement: the Left’s poem, from beginning to end, uses nothing but commonplace diction. The Right’s poem, too, really says nothing beyond the sense of its origin poem. The poems are of the same quality.