haresomuru mine no asagiri hima miete yama no ha wataru kari no hitotsura Beginning to clear Are the morning mists from round the peak And through the gaps appear Crossing the mountains’ edge A single line of geese.
Fujiwara no Yorikiyo
yamakaze ni tokuru kōri no hima goto ni uchi’izuru nami ya haru no hatsuhana With the mountain breeze The melting ice from Every crack Bursts out in waves, perhaps These are the first blooms of spring?
Minamoto no Maszumi
harugasumi tatsu hi no kaze no ito nare ya taki no o tokete tama to midaruru The haze of spring Arises with the breeze this day, so Will its streamers with The melting waterfall’s threaded Jewels become confused?
 Kokin rokujo I: 5
A poem from the Poetry Competition held in the reign of the Kanpyō Empress.
tokuru koFori no
uti’iduru nami ya
Faru no FatuFana In the valley’s breezes
Does melt the ice, and
From every crack
Do burst waves – are these
The first blooms of spring?
Minamoto no Masazumi
Love and Horse Hair.
Fima mo araba
woguro ni tateru
komagoma to koso
iFamahosikere Were there but space,
As perching on the paddy-ridges
Are the grey herons close
As the mounts ahead, in such detail
Would I tell you of my love.
Minamoto no Toshiyori
konu toko wa
akuru tanomi mo
naki mono o
hima ya shiromu to
matsu zo ayashiki An unvisited bed,
Of light has
No hope, but
Brightening through my bedroom door
Is what I am awaiting – how strange…
fukeyuku yowa o
tori no ne o ya wa
matsu akashitsuru Time and again he’d say he’d come, and
Through the deepening night
I’d grieve, but
Is it now for the first bird call
That I have awaited the dawn?
The Right state: ‘Unvisited bed’ (
konu toko) sounds as if it is the bed doing the visiting. The Left state: we do not feel that the Right’s poem expresses its intended sense fully.
In judgement: I feel it sounds better to say that ‘through the deepening night’ (
fukeyuku yowa) ‘is it now for the first bird call’ ( tori no ne o ya wa) that one waits, rather than that one is in ‘an unvisited bed’ ( konu toko) waiting for ‘brightening through my bedroom door’ ( hima ya shiromu).