Tag Archives: Murasaki Shikibu

SZS XVI: 977

When she had been in the Jōtōmon In and was returning home, she received a letter from a fellow lady-in-waiting, say she would come for lessons on the Chinese zither, so she composed this in reply:

露しげき蓬が中の蟲の音をおぼろけにてや人のたづねむ

tuyu sigeki
yomogi ga naka no
musi no ne wo
oboroke nite ya
Fito no tadunemu
Dew-drenched
Among the weeds,
The insect cries
Are faint, I think?
For you to visit would be…

Murasaki Shikibu
紫式部

SZS XVI: 962

Around the Twelfth month, a bitter man who had knocked at her gate and then returned home, sent to her asking if her gate would be open in the new year; so she composed this in reply:

誰が里の春のたよりにうぐひすの霞に閉づる宿を訪うらん

ta ga sato no
Faru no tayori ni
uguFisu no
kasumi ni toduru
yado wo touran
To whose house, indeed!
Bearing spring missives,
Would the warbler,
To a haze-hidden
House, come visiting?

Murasaki Shikibu
紫式部

SZS IX: 564

Someone who had gone to a distant place died there and when their relations returned to the capital with the sad news, she composed:

何方の雲路としらばたづねましつらはなれけむ雁の行末を

idukata no
kumodi to siraba
tadunemasi
tura Fanarekemu
kari no yukuwe wo
On which
Cloudway has he gone-could I but know,
I would travel too –
From his flock astray –
To that goose’s whereabouts.

Murasaki Shikibu
紫式部

SZS VII: 478

A person who was going far away came to see her and left with the dawn; it was the last day of the Ninth Month and the insects were crying movingly, so she composed:

なきよわる籬の蟲もとめがたき秋の別やかなしかるらむ

naki yowaru
magaki no musi mo
tomegataki
aki no wakare ya
kanasikaruramu
Faintly crying,
The insects in the cage, too,
Do they find it difficult to halt
The parting Autumn
And feel this sadness?

Murasaki Shikibu
紫式部