ause oba nagarete to koso tanomeshi ka ika ni to dani mo otonashi no taki Our meeting, like the rapids, Will flow on—can I Trust in that? However much they seem The silenced cataract of Otonashi…
sumiwaburu na no nagasaji to tsutsumu ma ni shibashi yodomu zo otonashi no taki Living on in sorrow and Letting no word of it flow out— Thus wrapped up Briefly stilled has been The cataract of Otonashi.
Supernumerary Minor Captain Morotoki
tsuraki oba omoihareji to omoedomo mi o shiru ame no tokoroseku kana Your cruelty Would never vanish from my thoughts, I felt, but The gentle rain knows me too well— How unmanageable it is!
omowazu ni furisou ame no nageki oba mikasa no yama o sashite chikanan Unexpectedly, Rainfall covers all With grief, as On Mount Mikasa, my umbrella I raise as it draws near.
Supernumerary Middle Counsellor Toshitada
ukinagara hito mo tsurashi to shirinureba kotowarinaku mo otsuru namida ka ‘Tis cruel, but, that Folk are heartless, I know too well, so Does it make no sense for My tears to fall?
Kai, from the Shijō Palace
karisome no taema o matsu ya uramubeki kotowarinaki wa namida narikeri A temporary Respite are you awaiting— Should you hate that? What makes no sense Are your tears…
The Supernumerary Master of the Left Capital Office
tamasaka ni aisakayama no makuzuwara mada urawakashi uramihateji na By chance, On Aisaka Mountain The fields of arrowroot are Still so young— O, do not end up despising them!
Lady Tsu, in service to the Former Kamo Virgin
natsuyama no shita hau kuzu no urawakami madaki ni tsuyu no kokoro okuran On the summer mountains The arrowroot, creeping beneath, Seems so young that Swiftly will the dewdrops Fall upon its heart.
The Minister of Justice
uramikane sayo no koromo o hito shirezu omoikaesedo nagusamanu kana Unable to despise you, On this brief night, my robe, Unknown to all, I did reverse in constant thought of you, but It brought me no comfort, at all!
Kii, from the Ichijō Palace
hitasura ni sayo no koromo ni kotoyosete uranaki hito o uramizaranan Truly, On this brief night, your robe Is but a pretext— An unfeeling lady I would not despise!
The Governor of Mimasaka
hito shirenu sode zo tsuyukeki au koto wa kare nomi masaru yama no shitagusa Unknown to all My sleeves are drenched with dew; For our meetings Excel only in being withered As the scrub grass on the mountainside.
[Nakako,] The Suō Handmaid
oku yama no shitakagegusa wa kare ya suru nokiba ni nomi wa onore naritsutsu Deep within the mountains, have The grasses growing in the trees’ dark shade Really withered away? Simply beneath your eaves, Is where I ever am…
The Consultant Middle Captain
Image by joyfultta from Pixabay
kitenareshi tamoto wa hito ni misetemashi tsuraki namida no iro no kawaraba I was wont to wear These sleeves—to him I would display them: If heartless tears Should change their hues…
Yurika, from the Hall of the Junior Consort
shinobugusa shinoburu hodo no yogare ni wa nani ni kokoro mo sode mo nururan A fond fern I do recall as My nightly visits cease, so Why is my heart and Sleeves, too, so drenched?
The Assistant Lieutenant of the Middle Palace Guards, Left Division
omoiyare towade hodo furu samidare ni hitori yado moru sode no shizuku o Lost in thoughts of you, Time without a visit passes by As a summer shower In my lonely home leaks Droplets on my sleeves…
yo to tomo ni sate nomi koso wa sugushishika omoishirinu ya sode no shizuku o Together with the world All stayed the same As it passed by; Could I be ignorant of The droplets on your sleeves?
The Middle Counsellor
tsurashi to mo iza ya ikaga wa iwashimizu ause madaki ni tayuru kokoro wa How cruel! Why as Spring waters rushing from the rocks did Our meeting swiftly Did you wish to end?
Kazusa, in service to the Empress
yo yo futomo taeji to zo omou kamigaki no iwane o kuguru mizu no kokoro wa Age upon age may pass, yet Never shall we end, I feel, as from The sacred precinct’s Rocky roots flow Waters—that is my heart!
Later, on the second day of the Fifth Month, it appears that everyone, quite losing their composure, decorated their replies extravagantly and even painted pictures beneath them; later, on the seventh day of the same month, because His Majesty sent instructions to the ladies who had been present to compose love poems and attend him, on that day they attended him to present their poems.
hototogisu matsu ni tsukete mo sasagani no izure no yo ni ka shiru toki zo omou A cuckoo I do await, and yet The tiny crab— On which night is it?— Will know the time, I hope!
shirushi arite konu yo mo are ya hototogisu nakanaka kakeshi kumo no furumai Should there be a sign, Would there really be a night he failed to come, That cuckoo? Truly to be trusted was The spider’s spinning…
The Major Counsellor
Image by Ada K from Pixabay