Autumn I: 26

Left.

百草の花もいかにか思ふらんあな情なの今朝の野分や

momokusa no
hana mo ika ni ka
omouran
ana nasakena no
kesa no nowaki ya
A myriad of grasses’
Bloom
: o what
To think?
How heartless was
The gale this morning!

Lord Kanemune.

351

Right (Win).

吹亂る野分の風の荒ければ安き空なき花の色色

fukimidaru
nowaki no kaze no
arakereba
yasuki sora naki
hana no iroiro
Blown into confusion by
The gale’s gusts
So fierce;
No respite to bloom
For any of the blossoms!

The Provisional Master of the Empress’ Household Office.

352

Neither Left nor Right can find anything to remark upon this round, and say as much.

Shunzei states, ‘“How heartless” (ana nasake na) is, indeed, an intriguing choice of words. The Right’s “blown into confusion” (fukimidaru) is reminiscent of the Tamakazura’s poem in Genji and all the more charming for it, is it not? Furthermore, the Left’s “blooms: o what” (hana mo ika ni ka) and the Right’s “no respite to bloom” (yasuki sora naki) are of equivalent quality, but the Left’s “myriad of grasses” lacks a linking term. Including “blown into confusion” makes the Right’s poem slightly superior, I would say.’

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