Tag Archives: hotaru

Koresada shinnō-ke uta’awase 22

あきのよにかりかもなきてわたるなる我が思ふ人のことづてやせる[1]

aki no yo ni
kari kamo nakite
watarunaru
wa ga omou hito no
kotozute ya seru
On an autumn night
Is that the geese a’crying
As they pass by?
There is one I love—
Would you take a message to her?

43

おく露にくちゆくのべのくさのはやあきのほたるとなりわたるらむ[2]

oku tsuyu ni
kuchiyuku nobe no
kusa no ha ya
aki no hotaru to
nariwataruramu
Dew falls on
The rotting meadows, where
The blades of grass with
The tired autumn fireflies
Do seem to sound…

44


[1] A minor variant of this poem is included in Gosenshū (VII: 356), where it is attributed to [Ki no] Tsurayuki.

[2] This poem is included in Fubokushō (5548), where it is attributed to [Mibu no] Tadamine.

Koresada shinnō-ke uta’awase 2

はまちどりあきとしなればあさぎりにかたまどはしてなかぬ日ぞなき

hamachidori
aki to shinareba
asagiri ni
kata madowashite
nakanu hi zo naki
The plovers on the beach:
When the autumn comes,
In the morning mists
Do lose their way;
No day dawns without their cries…

3

あきくればみやまざとこそわびしけれよるはほたるをともしびにして[1]

aki kureba
miyamazato koso
wabishikere
yoru wa hotaru o
tomoshibi ni shite
When the autumn comes
My hut deep in the mountains
Is lonelier by far;
At night with fireflies
For my lantern.

4


[1] This poem also appears as Fubokushō 5545 where is it is listed as by Ōe no Chisato

Autumn I: 17

Left (Win).

はかなしや荒れたる宿のうたゝ寢に稲妻通ふ手枕の露

hakanashi ya
aretaru yado no
utatane ni
inazuma kayou
tamakura no tsuyu
How brief it was!
In a ruined dwelling
Dozing, when
Lightning crossed
The dewdrops on my pillowing arm…

A Servant Girl.

333

Right.

すだき來し澤の螢は影消てたえだえ宿る宵の稲妻

sudakikoshi
sawa no hotaru wa
kage kiete
taedae yadoru
yoi no inazuma
All together have
The fireflies above the marsh
Lost their light;
Briefly remaining,
Lightning at the dusk…

Jakuren.

334

The Right state that they have no criticisms of the Left’s poem. The Left wonder about the suitability of fireflies disappearing in the autumn.

Shunzei feels, ‘The Left’s poem is certainly charming in form and expression, but more thought should have been given to the initial phrase “How brief it was!” (hakanashi ya). The Right’s poem, too, is charming, and as for fireflies being a topic for summer poetry alone, in autumn it is acceptable to compose on the failing of their light, is it not? Did not Anjin compose “Fireflies flashing on the palace stairs and gates/Crickets crying from the eaves and tiles”? There is also the example from the Collection of Songs to Sing Aloud of “Seeking cuckoo calls in the dawntime clouds/Innumerable fireflies flit among the autumn grasses”. Still, the Left’s “dewdrops on my pillowing arm” wins, I think.’

Love 57

Left (Tie).

くるゝ夜は衛士のたく火をそれと見よ室の八嶋も都ならねば

kururu yo wa
eji no taku hi wo
sore to miyo
muro no yashima mo
miyako naraneba
In the dark of night,
The conscripts kindled flames
Behold as my love, for
The waters of Muro no Yashima
Lie not within the capital.

113

Right (Tie).

蘆の屋に螢やまがふ海人やたく思ひも戀も夜はもえつゝ

ashi no ya ni
hotaru ya magau
ama ya taku
omoi mo koi mo
yoru wa moetsutsu
In a reed-roofed hut,
One might mistake for fireflies, or
Fisherfolk’s kindled fires
The passion and the love, that
Burns in me throughout the night.

114