Love I: 17

Left (Win).


tani fukami
haruka ni hito o
kiku no tsuyu
furenu tamoto yo
nani shioruran
Deep within the valley,
Of her, a distant
Word; no dew from the chrysanthemum
Has touched my sleeves, so
Why are they so damp?

A Servant Girl.




kimi o nomi
kokoro zukushi ni
kiku no ike
ii’idenu yori
sode zo nurenuru
Only you do
Fill the whole of my heart;
Word of the waters of Kiku Pond,
A mere mention and
My sleeves are soaked….

Lord Tsune’ie.


The Gentlemen of the Right state: the Left’s poem is without fault. The Gentlemen of the Left state: while the Right’s ‘Kiku Pond’ (kiku no ike) does have something novel about it, ‘a mere mention’ (ii’idenu) is pedestrian.

Shunzei’s judgement: The Left’s ‘chrysanthemum valley’ (kiku no tani) and the Right’s ‘chrysanthemum pond’ (kiku no ike) both along the same lines and seem to sound charming [okashiku koso kikoehaberumeredomo]; still, ‘no dew from the chrysanthemum has touched my sleeves’ (kiku no tsuyu furenu tamoto yo) seems a little more elegant to me now.

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