Love IV: 5


omokage mo
wakare ni kawaru
kane no oto ni
narai kanashiki
shinonome no sora
That your face
Is transformed to parting
By the bell’s toll:
How sad this custom
From the eastern skies!

Lord Sada’ie.

Right (Win).

akatsuki no
namida ya semete
sode ni ochikuru
kane no oto kana
At dawn, are
My tears, forced to be
Like them?
Falling on my sleeves:
The tolls of the bell!


The Right state: the sense of the Left’s poem is difficult to grasp on hearing. The Left state: the expression ‘forced to be’ (semete) seems out of place in the context of the Right’s poem.

In judgement: The Left’s poem, just as was said of Kisen’s poetry – that it was ‘obscure of diction and indefinite from beginning to end’  – seems to be in just such a style. The Right’s poem, while it does not, in fact, sound like a suitable context for ‘forced to be’ (semete), provides a profound conception in ‘falling on my sleeves’ (sode ni ochikuru). The Right should win.

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