Tag Archives: keepsake

Eikyū hyakushu 391

Blankets

荒れ果てて空しき床の形見には古き衾のむつましきかな

arehatete
munashiki toko no
katami ni wa
furuki fusuma no
mutsumashiki kana
From a disheveled
Meagre bed
For a keepsake I have
A threadbare blanket;
How close we are!

Higo, from the Residence of the Kyōgoku Regent
京極関白家肥後

MYS VII: 1276

池の辺の小槻の下の小竹な刈りそねそれをだに君が形見に見つつ偲はむ

ike no pe no
wotuki no sita no
sino na kari so ne
sore wo dani
kimi ga katami ni
mitutu sinopamu
Beside the pond,
Beneath the young zelkova tree,
Reap not the arrow bamboo!
For that, alone,
Is my keepsake of you, and
I would gaze on it and remember what is gone…

Hitomaro kashū
人麻呂歌集

Love IV: 24

Left (Win).
戀詫びて我と眺めし夕暮も馴るれば人の形見がほなる

koiwabite
ware to nagameshi
yūgure mo
narureba hito no
katamigao naru
Suffering with love
I have gazed
Upon the evening dark,
So used to it that it
Has become your keepsake!

Lord Sada’ie.
827

Right.
明ぼののあはればかりは忍ぶれど今日をば出でず春の夕暮

akebono no
aware bakari wa
shinoburedo
kyō oba idezu
haru no yūgure
The dawn’s
Sadness, I do just
Bear, but, oh,
Today, it will never come –
The evening in springtime!

Nobusada.
828

The Right state: when one understands the purport of the Left’s poem, it comes as a revelation. The Left state: in the Right’s poem we are unable to grasp the sense of ‘it will never come’ (idezu). In addition, the conception of Love seems lacking.

In judgement: both poems ‘evenings’ are support by little diction, yet the conception of Love is profound, indeed, such that my own shallow knowledge finds it difficult to grasp. However, the Right’s ‘Today, it will never come’ (kyō oba idezu) certainly does seem difficult to comprehend. I would have to say that the Left’s ‘So used to it that it’ (narureba hito no) is marginally superior.

Love II: 26

Left.

何か我今朝名残を歎かまし帰る程なく暮るる日ならば

nani ka ware
kesa nagori o
nagekamashi
kaenu hodo naku
kururu hi naraba
Why should I
This morning for my keepsake
Have only grief?
If but a while from leaving
The sun sets once again…

Lord Suetsune

711

Right (Win).

しばしなる今朝の別に見つる哉心がはりの行末の夢

shibashinaru
kesa no wakare ni
mitsuru kana
kokoro gawari no
yukusue no yume
For just a while
At this morning’s parting
Did I see it:
Your change of heart
In a prescient dream…

Lord Nobusada

712

The Gentlemen of the Right state: the Left’s poem is entirely in the conception of a morning after poem. This does not match the conception of this topic. The Gentlemen of the Left state: the sense of the Right’s poem is difficult to grasp. The use of ‘dream’ (yume) does not fit with the remainder of the poem’s contents.

Shunzei’s judgement: in terms of the Left’s poem, the morning after is also a parting. What fault can be found in this? However, the Right’s ‘change of heart in a prescient dream’ sounds charming. Thus, the Right wins.

Winter I: 10

Left (Win).

暮ていにし秋の形見と思ふべき菊さへ色を變へてけるかな

kurete’inishi
aki no katami to
omoubeki
kiku sae iro o
kaetekeru kana
Night has fallen on
Autumn’s keepsake –
Or so I thought –
Even the chrysanthemums’ hues
Have changed…

Lord Kanemune.

499

Right.

一枝も折りつる袖は白菊の匂ひまでこそ移ろひにけれ

hito eda mo
oritsuru sode wa
shiragiku no
nioi made koso
utsuroinikere
A single stem
I plucked and to my sleeves
The white chrysanthemums’
Scent, even,
Has shifted…

Jakuren.

500

The Right have no criticisms to make of the Left’s poem. The Left state that there does not seem to be the conception of ‘lingering’ in the Right’s poem. In response, the Right say, ‘By the use of “even” (made) one can understand that the chrysanthemums’ hues have shifted as well. The use of “shift” (utsurou) expresses the conception of lingering [nokori no kokoro nari].

Shunzei’s judgement: The Left’s ‘Even the chrysanthemums’ hues’ (kiku sae iro o) seems most fine [yoroshiku koso haberumere]. The Right, too, with its ‘chrysanthemums’ scent’ (kiku no nioi) is particularly splendid [fukaku yū ni wa haberubeshi]. On the matter of the conception of lingering chrysanthemums [nokori no kiku no kokoro], the Right have said that ‘using “even the scent” expresses the conception of lingering’, which is true enough, but is it not that the scent has shifted to the poet’s sleeves, even though the flowers are chrysanthemums? Thus, the conception of a shift of hue must be somewhat weak [utsurou kokoro wa nao sukunakarubeku]. In any case, the Left’s conception of lingering is certainly stronger. The Left wins.

Miscellaneous 85

Left (Win).

忘るなよやどるたもとは變るともかたみにしぼる袖の月かげ

wasuru na yo
yadoru tamoto wa
kawaru tomo
katami ni shiboru
sode no tsukikage
O, forget me not!
In your journey’s lodging, your sleeves
May change, yet
For a keepsake wring
From them drops of moonlight.

169

Right.

わかれても心へだつな旅衣幾えかさなる山路なりとも

wakaretemo
kokoro hedatsu na
tabi koromo
ikue kasanaru
yamaji naritomo
Though we may part,
Keep me not from your heart,
Though journey garb
In many piled layers
Of mountain paths lie in-between.

170