Tag Archives: yama

Love IV: 11


kumo kakari
kasanaru yama o
koe mo sezu
hedate masaru wa
akuru hi no kage
Trailed with cloud,
The layered mountains
I have not gone beyond, but
What stands between us most is
The light of the brightening sun.

Lord Sada’ie.

Right (Win).

isa inochi
omoi wa yowa ni
yūbe mo mataji
aki no akebono
I know not what’s to become of my life!
All my thoughts of love in the hours of night
Are quite exhausted, and
I cannot wait for evening
On this autumn dawn…


The Right state: from ‘Trailed with cloud’ (kumo kakari) to ‘The light of the brightening sun’ (akuru hi no kage), all is entirely unacceptable, is it not? The Left state: we wonder about the acceptability of ‘I know not what’s to become of my life’ (isa inochi).

In judgement: the Right have said that the Left’s poem is unacceptable from beginning to end, but can one really go so far as to say that? Furthermore, the Left query whether ‘I know not what’s to become of my life’, but I wonder whether I can recall this phrase being that bad. However, one is accustomed to saying that ‘this spring dawn’ (haru no akebono) is elegant, and although ‘this autumn dawn’ (aki no akebono) is a modern expression, the faults of the Left’s poem are particularly problematic, so the Right should win.

Love IV: 9


sora harete
yama no ha izuru
hikage ni mo
kawaki mo yaranu
sode no ue kana
The sky clears and
From the mountains’ edge appears
The sunlight, yet
It cannot even dry
The surface of my sleeves…

Lord Ari’ie.

Right (Win).

sawa ni idete
asana tsumu
tomo oboenu
ayashiki hodo ni
nururu sode kana
Going out to the marshes and
Gathering greens for breakfast –
I cannot recall at all;
How strange it is that
My sleeves are then so drenched…

Lord Tsune’ie.

The Right state: we find no faults to mention in the Left’s poem. The Left state: recalling gathering greens for breakfast is something one can do in the afternoon or the evening. In addition, ‘I cannot recall’ (oboenu) is prosaic in content.

In judgement: the Left’s poem simply says that the sunlight is unable to dry one’s sleeves, and contains little conception of love. The Right’s ‘sleeves’ sound as if they have been most extraordinarily drenched, so the Right should win.

Love III: 7

Left (Tie).


ware koizuma ya
tamasaka yama ni
koe no honomeku
I spoke once
With the girl I love;
A cuckoo
At Mount Tamasaka
Calling briefly





nasake no yama ni
kumo kiete
haruru kokoro ya
hoshiai no sora
Our gentle connection; the mountain
Freed from cloud,
Warming our hearts
Like, perhaps the skies where stars meet.



The Right state: we do not like the Left’s poem, but find no specific faults worth mentioning. The Left state: we are not accustomed to the expression ‘gentle connection; the mountain’ (nasake no yama)

In judgement: Mount Tamasaka’s cuckoo and the Weaver Maid’s gentle mountain connection are of the same quality.

Winter II: 13



yamazato no
sabishisa omou
keburi yue
taedae tateru
mine no shiishiba
That mountain dwelling’s
Loneliness feeling,
The smoke,
Rising in sporadic strands:
The brushwood on the peak…

A Servant Girl.


Right (Win).


kusa no tozashi wa
majikaki yama no
mine no shiishiba
Sealed in winter
The blockading grasses are
Seared by frost, and
How much closer is the mountain
Peak’s brushwood.



Both teams say that the conceptions of the two poems resemble each other closely [kokoro hōfutsu].

Shuzei’s judgement: The Left, by starting, ‘That mountain dwelling’s loneliness feeling, the smoke’ (yamazato no sabishisa omou keburi yue) sounds as if it is the brushwood itself which has some sensitivity to the situation, and are rising up from time to time. I wonder about that. The Right’s evergreen groves ‘nearing the mountain’ (majikaki yama) is what should win.

Winter II: 11



yuki uzumu
matsu o midori ni
mise mo kikase mo
yama oroshi no kaze
Buried in the snows,
The pines to green
Are blown back,
Sight and sound both from
The wind down the mountains.

Lord Ari’ie.




kozue no kumo o
kaesu nari
onoue no matsu no
yuki no urakaze
Frozen with chill,
The treetop-touching clouds
Fly away;
The pines of Onoue,
Blown free from the snows by the wind from off the bay…



Neither team finds any fault with the other’s poem.

Shunzei’s judgement: This round the poems of Left and Right both describe memorable scenes. The Left’s ‘pines to green are blown back’ (matsu o midori ni fukikaeshi) and the Right’s ‘pines of Onoue, blown free from the snows by the wind from off the bay’ (onoue no matsu no yuki no urakaze) are equivalently excellent in conception and diction [kokoro kotoba shōretsu naku miehaberi]. This must be a tie of quality [yoki ji].