Composed and sent to Master of the Right Capital Office Akisuke when he was Governor of Ōmi, to remark on his travelling to a distant district.
omoFikane sonata no sora wo nagamureba tada yama no Fa ni kakaru sirakumo Unbearable is my heart’s pain— Upon the distant skies I gaze, but Simply upon the mountains’ edge Cling clouds of white. [i]
The Former Chancellor and Palace Minister
Created with Soan.
[i] An allusive variation on . Rinkashū 205
oshimedomo tomaranu aki wa tokiwayama momiji hatenu to mite mo yurusaji I regret it, yet Autumn lingers not Upon the evergreen mountains The scarlet leaves have yet to end, I see and would not let them go.
toshigoto ni tomaranu aki to omoinaba temoroki hito mo oshimazaramashi If, that every single year Autumn lingers not, I did not think, then Tear-filled folk I would not have regret it.
mate to iite tomaranu aki to shirinagara sora yuku tsuki no oshiku aru kana ‘Wait!’ I say, but Autumn will not linger I know, so The moon passing through the skies Fills me with regret!
miyama naru momiji no nishiki iro ni idete oshimu ni aki no tataba ukaran Deep within the mountains The scarlet leaves in brocade’s Hues stand out, so I would regret it were autumn Cut short—how heartless that would be!
shiguretsutsu kusaba mo nabete momizu to mo tokiwa no yama ni aki wa tomareri Ever falls the drizzling rain, and Both leaves and grasses, all, Take on autumn hues, yet Within the evergreen mountains Autumn has halted.
oshimedomo aki wa tomaranu tatsutayama momiji o nusa to sora ni tamuken How I regret it, yet Autumn does not linger upon Tatsuta Mountain: Its autumn leaves as a garland To the skies it seems to offer.
Composed when I had held an archery entertainment, and made a model of Mount Yoshino, with a sage gazing at blossom upon it.
miyoshino no yama ni iriken yamabito to nari miteshi kana hana ni aku ya to Into fair Yoshino’s Mountains would I go; A mountain man Having become Might I have enough of blossom?
Created with Soan.
Composed on the First day of the First Month
kesa mireba yama mo kasumite hisakata no ama no hara yori haru wa kinikeri Gazing out this morning The mountains are all hazed From the eternal Plains of Heaven [i] Spring has come, at last!
Created with Soan.
[i] The reference to the ‘plains of Heaven’ ( ama no hara 天の原) being ‘eternal’ ( hisakata 久方) implies that the poet has been long awaiting the arrival of spring—a nuance which I have attempted to capture with the final ‘at last’.
hito kou to hakanaki shini o ware ya sen mi no araba koso nochi mo aimime Loving her was Brief, so is die What I should do? If I live on then I might meet her later!
yū sareba yama no ha ni izuru tsukikusa no utsushigokoro wa kimi ni someteki When the evening comes From the mountains’ edge emerges Moongrass—just as My loving heart has Been dyed by you.
Five poems on the Fourth Month
miyama idete mazu hatsukoe wa hototogisu yobu kaku matamu wa ga yado ni nake Emerging from the mountains deep, Early, your first call, Cuckoo— Where I would be waiting all night long At my house, o, sing out!
kyō yori wa natsu no koromo ni narinuredo kiru hito sae wa kawarazarikeri From today Summer garb We have put on, yet The folk who wear it Have not changed at all.
‘The Right is uninteresting,’ so it lost.
[i] Minamoto no Masakata 源雅固 (dates unknown). A son of Minamoto no Sada’ari 源定有 (dates unknown), one of the sons of Emperor Montoku (827-858; r. 850-858).
chirikawaru kokoro nakeredo miyamagi no tokiwa wa aki mo shirarezarikeri A flighty Heart, has it not, yet Deep within the mountains, that the trees Are evergreen, even the autumn Seems not to know…
shitagusa no hana o mitsureba murasaki ni aki sae fukaku narinikeru kana When in the undergrowth Flowers I do see, their Violet in Autum much deeper Has become!