Tag Archives: letter

Love VII: 2

Left.
我戀に深さくらへば外山哉吉野の奧の岩のかけ道

wa ga koi ni
fukasa kuraeba
toyama kana
yoshino no oku no
iwa no kakemichi
My love’s
Depth were you to measure,
Distant mountains, perhaps?
As in the heart of Yoshino, where
The craggy paths are overgrown!

Lord Ari’ie.
963

Right (Win).
ふみ見ても馴れぬけしきのつれなさや吉野の奧の岩のかけ道

fumi mitemo
narenu keshiki no
tsurenasa ya
yoshino no oku no
iwa no kakemichi
She read my letter – I treading on paths unknown –
And cared not – an unfamiliar scene –
Is her cruelty
As in the heart of Yoshino, where
The craggy paths are overgrown?

Ietaka.
964

The Right state: in the Left’s poem, the expression ‘distant mountains, perhaps’ (toyama kana) sounds poor. The Left state: the Right’s poem has no faults to mention.

In judgement: both Left and Right have precisely identical sections: ‘as in the heart of Yoshino’ (yoshino no oku) and ‘craggy paths are overgrown’ (iwa no kakemichi), but considering the initial sections, it has already been stated that the Left’s sounds poor, while the Right lacks faults. Thus, in accordance with the remarks by the Gentlemen of both teams, the Right is the winner.

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 IV: 8

Left (Win).
いつしかと今朝遣る文の言の葉は逢嬉しさと飽かぬ恨と

itsu shika to
kesa yaru fumi no
koto no ha wa
au ureshisa to
akanu urami to
So swiftly
On this morning, I send a letter and
In its words
The joy of meeting and
My unending despair…

Lord Kanemune.
795

Right.
今はたゞ戀に我身に弱りつゝ明けぬと聞けど起きぞゐられぬ

ima wa tada
koi ni wagami ni
yowaritsutsu
akenu to kikedo
oki zo irarenu
Now, simply
With love I
Am weakened;
Hearing that the dawn has come
I am unable to rise…

The Provisional Master of the Empress’ Household Office.
796

The Right state: the Left’s ‘On this morning, I send a letter and in its words’ (kesa yaru fumi no koto no ha) seems utterly plain. Simply composing on the morning after seems somewhat dubious. The Left state: we find nothing to mention in the Right’s poem.

In judgement: although the Right does convey the pathos of love, the Left’s ‘On this morning, I send a letter’ is certainly superior.