Tag Archives: Tsukuba Mountain

Love VII: 5

Left (Win).

sue no matsu
matsu yo ikutabi
yama kosu nami o
sode ni makasete
At the pines of Sué
How many nights have I spent
Pining for him?
As the waves break over the mountain
So let them on my sleeves…

A Servant Girl.


hito shirezu
kimi ni kokoro o
himanaki mono wa
nageki narikeri
For you has my heart
Yearned to exhaustion; as Tsukuba Mountain’s
Close packed trees, endless
Is my grief.

Lord Tsune’ie.

The Gentlemen of the Right state: in what way are the the waves ‘allowed’ in ‘let them on my sleeves’ (sode ni makasuru)? The Left state: the Right uses Tsukuba, followed by ‘close packed trees, endless’ (himanaki), and although this does have the same meaning, it would be more customary to use ‘verdant’ (shigeki).

In judgement: although the Left’s  ‘so let them on my sleeves’ (sode ni makasete) sounds somewhat unclear, the Right’s ‘Tsukuba Mountain’s close packed trees, endless’ suggests many layers of reed-thatch, I think. ‘As the waves break over the mountain’ (yama kosu nami) seems to reach greater heights.

Love VII: 1

Left (Tie).

toshi o hete
shigeru nageki o
kori mo sede
nado fukakaran
mono’omoi no yama
The years go by and
My ever verdant grief
Is never felled;
Why am I so deep
In mountains of gloomy thought?



kimi ni ware
fukaku kokoro o
shigeki nageki ni
korihatenu kana
You for me
Had deep thoughts once –
All gone now, yet on Tsukuba Mountain
My ever verdant grief
Remains unfelled…

The Supernumerary Master of the Empress’ Household Office.

The Right state: we are not familiar with the expression ‘mountains of gloomy thought’ (mono’omoi no yama) used in the Left’s poem. The Left state: the Right’s poem has nothing significant to say.

In judgement: both poems use the wordplay of ‘ever verdant grief’ (shigeki nageki) and a ‘heart unfelled’ (korinu kokoro); they have no particular merits or faults. The round ties.