When he had gone to the province of Michinoku as its governor, he saw a withered pine tree at Takekuma, and had a sapling planted to replace it; after finishing his posting, he returned to the same province later, and saw the pine he had planted once more.
uesi toki tigiri ya si ken takekuma no matu wo Futatabi aFimituru kana
When I planted you Did I make a vow, perhaps? That Takekuma’s Pine once more I would encounter!
The Right state: the Left’s poem has no faults. The Left state: the Right’s poems contains a fault, does it not?
In judgement: What are we to make of the Left’s ‘In a clear glass my ever-changing reflected’ (masukagami utsushikaekemu)? While I have the feeling that there is a source for this poem, this aged official is completely unable to grasp it what it might be. It is not the case that the poem is lacking in an elegant style. The Gentlemen of the Left have commented on the existence of a fault in the Right’s poem. Perhaps the two cranes (tsuru)? This type of issue relating to a poem’s formal diction does not seem that serious to me. However, saying ‘does this so resemble her, that at’ (nite ya kakuran) is insufficient in terms of expression. The Left’s ‘clear glass’ would win, if its source were clear, but in its absence, it is difficult to make it the winner.
Both Left and Right state: we find no faults to mention.
In judgement: both poems refer to ‘the bridge of Kazuragi, while the Left has ‘a relationship that’s done’ (taenuru naka). As the bridge, from the very beginning, was never finished, it is not appropriate to say that it is ‘done’. ‘A vow at night’ (yoru no chigiri) seems to be referring to Kodaigimi’s ‘cannot endure’ (taenubeshi). The Right has certainly matched the conception of the bridge. Thus, I make the Right the winner.
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.
In judgement: although the Left’s poem sounds a little over-familiar, it certainly does have conception. The Right’s poem does sound smooth, but the origin poem has ‘Forget me not’ (wasuru na yo) – and this has ‘I will not forget’ (wasurezu yo) – the origin poem has ‘for distant as the clouds’ (hodo wa kumoi ni) – and this has ‘how far beyond the clouds’ (iku kumoi to wa); and ‘as the moon across the skies’ (sora yuku tsuki no) is identical, so the only part which as been changed is ‘I shall return – ‘til then’ (meguri au made). It is only to be expected that it would sound good, given that it presents much of the same material in the same order. The Left should win.