Tag Archives: Tsune’ie

Love VIII: 14

Left (Tie)
人心常は卯月の時鳥ことかたらはん聲を聞かばや

hito kokoro
tsune wa uzuki no
hototogisu
koto kataran
koe o kikaba ya
Her heart is
Ever chill; O, for the Fourth Month
Cuckoo
To tell me
With a gentle song!

Lord Suetsune
1047

Right
足引の遠山鳥の一聲は我つまながらめづらしき哉

ashihiki no
tōyamadori no
hitogoe wa
ware tsumanagara
mezurashiki kana
Leg-wearying
The distant mountain pheasant’s
Call is
Even for his mate
A rare thing, indeed!

Lord Tsune’ie
1048

The Gentlemen of the Right state: the Left’s poem has no faults. The Gentlemen of the Left state: the initial part of the Right’s poem has an antiquated feel.

In judgement: the Left’s ‘cuckoo’ (hototogisu) and the Right’s ‘mountain pheasant’ (yamadori) are of the same level.

Love VIII: 10

Left (Win)
うかりける我み山木の契かな連なる枝もありとこそ聞け

ukarikeru
wa ga mi yamagi no
chigiri kana
tsuranaru eda mo
ari to koso kike
In despair
Am I: hidden among the mountain trees
Is my love;
Though once branches lay atop each other
I did hear…

Lord Suetsune
1039

Right
涙には憂き深山木も朽ちぬべし沖つ小嶋のひさきならねど

namida ni wa
uki fukayamagi mo
kuchinubeshi
oki tsu kojima no
hisaki naranedo
Among my tears,
Drift, despairing, trees from the mountain deeps,
Rotting all away, though
On islets in the offing
On bush-covered beaches, they are not…

Lord Tsune’ie
1040

Both Left and Right state: we find no faults.

In judgement: both Left and Right use the image of ‘trees from the mountain deeps’ (fukayamagi), and neither is superior, or inferior, to the other in this, but I would have to say that the Left’s ‘though once branches lay atop each other I did hear…’ (tsuranaru eda mo ari to koso kike) is somewhat better than the Right’s ‘on bush-covered beaches, they are not…’ (hisaki naranedo).

Love VIII: 1

Left (Win)
忘らるゝ人に軒端の忍ぶ草涙の雨ぞ露けかりける

wasuraruru
hito ni nokiba no
shinobugusa
namida no ame zo
tsuyukekarikeru
Forgotten by
Him, beneath my eaves
The ferns bring back memories;
A rain of tears
Leaves them dew-drenched.

Lord Kanemune
1021

Right
戀づまのやがて軒端になり行けばいとど忍ぶの草ぞ茂れる

koizuma no
yagate nokiba ni
nariyukeba
itodo shinobu no
kusa zo shigereru
My man is
Far away; beneath my eaves
Are the signs:
How many memories and
Ferns grow thickly…

Lord Tsune’ie
1022

Both Left and Right state: we find no faults to mention.

In judgement: both poems refer to ‘memory ferns’ (shinobugusa), and there is not a great deal of difference in quality between them, but the Left’s ‘rain of tears’ (namida no ame), with its association of dew, is slightly better than the Right’s ‘ferns grow thickly’ (kusa zo shigereru), and so should win.

Love VII: 26

Left.
人心緒絶えの橋に立かへり木の葉降りしく秋の通ひ路

hito kokoro
odae no hashi ni
tachikaeri
ko no ha furishiku
aki no kayoiji
Our hearts
On the broken bridge at Odae
Do stand;
Fallen leaves swept along
The autumn paths back and forth…

Lord Sada’ie.
1011

Right.
思はずに緒絶えの橋と成ぬれどなを人知れず戀わたるかな

omowazu ni
odae no hashi to
narinuredo
nao hito shirezu
koi watarukana
Unthinkingly
To the broken bridge of Odae
Have we come, yet
Still, unknown to all,
Might our love make a crossing?

Lord Tsune’ie.
1012

The Gentlemen of the Right state: we wonder about the purpose of ‘fallen leaves swept along’ (ko no ha furishiku) in the Left’s poem. The Gentlemen of the Left state: the Right’s poem is pedestrian.

In judgement: Both the poems of the Left and of the Right use ‘bridge of Odae’ (odae no hashi) which is tasteful. The Left’s ‘fallen leaves swept along’ must be following Ise Monogatari. The gentlemen of the Right must surely be pretending ignorance! The poem of the Right, too, has an elegant total configuration, but ‘unknown to all’ (hito shirezu) is at odds with the emotional overtones. Thus the Left’s ‘fallen leaves swept along the autumn paths back and forth’ is better. I make it the winner.

Love VII: 19

Left.
逢ふ事は苗代水を引き止めて通しはてぬや小山田の關

au koto wa
nawashiro mizu o
hikitomete
tōshihatenu ya
oyamada no seki
Can a meeting, like
The waters round the rice seedlings
Be stopped
In their endless flow
Past the Oyamada Barrier?

Kenshō
997

Right (Win).
衣手は清見が關にあらねども絶ゆるよもなき涙也けり

koromode wa
kiyomi ga seki ni
aranedomo
tayuru yo mo naki
namida narikeri
My sleeves as
The Barrier at Kiyomi
Are not, yet
Without cease
Are my tears…

Lord Tsune’ie.
998

The Right state: we are unfamiliar with the expression ‘Oyamada Barrier’ (oyamada no seki). The Left state: it sounds as if it is tears that are ceaseless at the Barrier at Kiyomi.

In judgement: the Left’s poem is stylistically tasteful, but with only ‘can a meeting, like the waters round the rice seedlings’ (au koto wa nawashiro mizu) the conception of love is weak is it not? The Right’s poem metaphorically has tears ceaseless at the Barrier at Kiyomi, and with the ta present, I accept the Left’s point to a certain extent, but this type of thing is not unusual in metaphorical poems.  In addition, there is little reason to imagine the waters round the rice-seedlings being blocked. As it has a stronger focus on Love, the Right wins.

Love VII: 14

Left (Win).
いつかさはまたは逢ふ瀬を松浦潟此河上に家は住むとも

itsuka sa wa
mata wa ause o
matsu’uragata
kono kawakami ni
ie wa sumu tomo
Sometime it may be that
Again we’ll meet, so
I await, though on Matsura Inlet’s
Upper reaches
Does my house lie…

Lord Sada’ie
987

Right.
水無瀬川淺き契と思へども涙は袖にかけぬ間ぞなき

minasegawa
asaki chigiri to
omoedomo
namida wa sode ni
kakenu ma zo naki
The River Minase runs
Shallow as our vows
I feel, yet
Tears upon my sleeves
Fall without a single pause…

Lord Tsune’ie
988

The Right state: we are unable to admire the Left’s poem. The Left state: if the initial part of the poem has ‘shallow’ (asashi), we would like there to be ‘deep’ (fukashi) in the concluding section. In addition, is the poem suggesting that the shallows do not give rise to waves? The initial and concluding section of the poem do not match and the whole is old-fashioned.

In judgement: the Gentlemen of the Right state that they are unable to admire the Left’s poem. It also sounds like there are a number of accumulated criticisms of the Right’s poem.  This is enough to cause me quite some perplexity. I am unable to identify any faults in the Left’s poem which render it unworthy of appreciation. Thus, the Left wins.

Love VII: 8

Left (Tie).
わたの原沖つ潮風に立つ浪の寄り來やかかる汀なりとも

wata no hara
oki tsu nami ni
tatsu nami no
yoriko ya kakaru
migiwa naritomo
Across the broad sea sweep,
The waves from the offing,
The breakers:
So I would have you come to me,
Though I be such a shore…

Lord Ari’ie.
975

Right.
わたの原深き契りや渚なるかたし貝ともなりにける哉

wata no hara
fukaki ya chigiri
nagisa naru
katashigai tomo
narinikeru kana
The broad sea sweep’s
Depths: did our vow match them?
Upon the beach lie
Single seashells:
That is what we have become!

Lord Tsune’ie.
976

The Right state: we are unable to appreciate the Left’s poem. The Left state: as are we the Right’s poem.

In judgement: the Left’s poem would seem to be an improved example of a poem in the style of the previous round. That being said, the waves wouldn’t not come, would they? And, what is the point in addressing them so? The Right’s poem has an extremely flippant final section. The poems are comparable and should tie.

Love VII: 5

Left (Win).
末の松待つ夜幾度過ぬらん山超す浪を袖にまかせて

sue no matsu
matsu yo ikutabi
suginuran
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.
969

Right.
人知れず君に心を筑波山ひまなきものはなげき也けり

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

Lord Tsune’ie.
970

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 VI: 26

Left (Win).
戀死なんのちを思へば目にぞたつそのゆへもなき空の煙も

koishinan
nochi o omoeba
me ni zo tatsu
sono yue mo naki
sora no keburi mo
I shall die of love, and
When I think on it
What should touch my eyes
But, lacking any meaning,
Smoke rising to the skies…

Lord Ari’ie.
951

Right.
戀ひ死なむ後は煙とあがるとも君が方へぞ猶なびくべき

koishinamu
nochi wa kemuri to
agaru tomo
kimi ga kata e zo
nao nabikubeki
When I have died of love
Then, though as smoke
I may rise,
Still towards you
I shall trail!

Lord Tsune’ie.
952

The Right state: the Left’s poem has no faults. The Left state: we wonder about the use of ‘rise’ (agaru) in the Right’s poem.

In judgement: both poems have ‘die for love’ (koishinan), and there are no particular features of either which warrant a victory or a loss, but ‘touch my eyes’ (me ni tatsu) seems a little finer than the Right’s ‘rise’ (agaru) ‘towards’ (kata e zo).

Love VI: 20

Left.
雨そそき人待つ宵は憂かりけりこやことづけにならんと思へば

ame sosoki
hito matsu yoi wa
ukarikeri
koya kotozuke ni
naran to omoeba
Rain dripping,
The nights awaiting him are
Cruel, indeed;
That is his excuse,
Or so I feel!

Lord Suetsune.
939

Right (Win).
頼めねど絶えず音する時雨かな戀しき人のかゝらましかば

tanomenedo
taezu otosuru
shigure kana
koishiki hito no
kakaramashikaba
I put no trust in you, yet
Ceaselessly, you come to call
O, showers!
I would that the man I love
Would do the same…

Lord Tsune’ie.
940

The Right state: the Left’s poem has no faults. The Left state: the Right’s poem is pedestrian.

In judgement: in the Left’s poem, while ‘rain dripping’ (ame sosoki) sounds like it should recall Eastern House, there is no clear reason for this, and ‘that is his excuse’ (koya kotozuke) would also seem to refer to ‘“In the land of Tsu / Come on”’ (tsu no kuni no / koya). ‘Rain dripping’, though, does not link to this, I think. While the Right’s poem may be pedestrian, it certainly should win.