Autumn II: 1



ame furedo
kasatoriyama no
shika no ne wa
nakanaka yoso no
sode nurashikeri
Though rain falls on
Kasatori Mountain, with an umbrella in my hand, it is
The stag’s call,
Distant, that
Has left dampness on my sleeves…

Lord Suetsune.




saranu dani
aki no aware wa
taesenu ni
kokorobososa o
souru ame kana
It should not be so, yet
Autumn wrenches at my heart, so
I cannot bear it;
Brought on by the rain…

Lord Tsune’ie.


The Right have two criticisms of the Left’s poem: ‘The initial five syllables have no link with the end of the poem. Furthermore, we question the use of “distant” (yoso). The Left merely say that they find the Right’s poem ‘unremarkable’.

Shunzei broadly agrees: ‘The lack of linkage in the Left’s poem is as stated – although it starts “Though rain falls on” (ame furedo), it seems as if the poet’s sleeves were wet by the stag’s call, and thus the poem does not appear to be composed on the theme of “rain”. Whatever the formal faults of the Right’s poem, it is composed on “Autumn Rain”. It must win.’

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