Tag Archives: kure

Yōzei-in uta’awase (Engi jūsan-nen kugatsu kokonoka) 12



kusamura no
kokoro shi to tomo
ni zo wataru
kure wa shinubeki
aki no oshisa ni
A tangled patch of grass is
My heart—together
Will it cross, and with
The evening pass away
Amid autumn regrets…[i]


Right (Win)


korizu ma ni
ai mo miru kana
tomarazu kaeru
aki to shirurashi
While I do not dislike her,
I will come to meet and see,
My maidenflower!
Not lingering, and returning
Having had enough—as autumn seems to do, I know…


[i] The central part of this poem appears to have been corrupted as the division kokoro shi to tomo / ni zo wataru is anomalous as it places the bound morphemes ni zo at the beginning of a line. Given this, my translation is speculative.

SKKS VI: 693

Composed on the evening of the year.


yo yo no omokage
yuki ni furinuru
toshi no kure kana
Disappearing into the distance
Are the shapes of times gone by,
Darkness descending with
The falling snow—my age
At the evening of the year.

The Daughter of Master of the Dowager Empress Household Office Toshinari

Love IV: 20

Left (Win).

tamahoko no
michi yukibito mo
kokoro arite
kon to tanomeyo
kono yūke ni wa
Jewelled spear straight
The road for this traveller:
If he longs for me,
Let it say, ‘Come with me!’,
This evening’s fortune!

Lord Kanemune.


au koto o
tanomuru kure to
iriai no kane mo
‘We will meet,
On that you can rely, at dusk,’
He made me think, so
The sunset bell, too,
Does seem full of joy!

The Provisional Master of the Empress’ Household Office.

The Right state: evening fortune-telling and crossroad divination are different things. The Left state: the Right’s poem has no faults.

In judgement: both evening fortune-telling and crossroad divination are conducted in the evening, and with either one could wish ‘Let it say, “Come with me!”’ (kon to tanomeyo), so this does not seem to be a mistake does it? The Right has the fault of having both ‘We will meet’ (au koto o) and ‘sunset bell, too’ (iriai no kane mo). The Left should win.

Love IV: 12


hitorine no
sode no nagori no
hikage ni kienu
tsuyu mo arikeri
Sleeping solo
My sleeves remain
Damp in the morning;
The sunlight leaves untouched
The dewfall there.

A Servant Girl.

Right (Win).

michishiba o
wakete tsuyukeki
sode naraba
nuretemo kure mo
matamashi mono o
If the roadside grasses,
Have brushed dewfall
On these sleeves,
May to dampen them again, ‘til evening
I would wish to wait…


The Right state: we find no faults in the Left’s poem. The Left state: there is a very recent poem, ‘If he would be wet with waves should surely wait for evening?’.

In judgement: simply saying, ‘Sleeping solo my sleeves remain damp in the morning’ (hitorine no sode no nagori no asajimeri) seems to lack the conception of love. I wonder who might have written the ‘recent poem’, ‘If he would be wet with waves should surely wait for evening?’ mentioned by the Right? How, indeed, can we avoid poems which are not in the anthologies? In any case, the poem here is ‘May to dampen them again, ‘til evening I would wish to wait’ and the initial line is different. This level of resemblance between poems is not uncommon. The Right’s poem is pleasant. It should win.



iwama ni tatamu
ikadashi ya
nami ni nuretemo
kure o matsuran
At the river Tonase
Bursting from between the rocks
The raftsman
If he would be wet with waves
Should surely wait for evening?

Fujiwara no Toshinari
From ‘The Hundred Poem Sequence Composed at the House of the Minister of the Right’ (1172)