The Right state: both of the latter sections of the Left’s poem are extremely informal. The Left state: the Right’s poem has no faults, but we do wonder about the appropriateness of ‘exchange for a sign’ (kauru shirushi).
In judgement: ‘first dyed with indigo’ (aisomete), ‘Shikama Market’ (shikama no ichi) and ‘night’s dark cloth’ (yogaregachi) – all of these sound evocative. Following ‘I briefly glimpsed at Miwa Market’ (honoka ni miwa no ichi) with ‘exchange’ (kauru) sounds rather abrupt, but saying, ‘were there to be a sign’ (shirushi ari ya) at Miwa Market does not sound pointless. Generally speaking, on the Way of Poetry, poems whose conception is plainly expressed do not consider their diction, while poems which place weight upon their diction lack a clear conception. Poems which attempt to fully express their configuration are often at variance from the topic – all this is well known. The Left’s poem has a poor final section. The Right wins.
The Right state: we wonder whether ‘deepest indigo dipped many times’ (kara’ai no yashio) should not be scarlet. How dark would the colour be then? In response: there is no possibility of interpreting this as scarlet. We have used deep indigo, so what is there to criticise in then using dark? The Left state: while we understand the conception of the poem, we feel the expression is somewhat lacking. ‘My heart’s depths are stained with secret longing’ (kokoro zo fukaki shinobu mojizuri) does not link well with the initial part of the poem.
In judgement: the Left’s initial ‘deepest indigo’ (kara’ai) certainly sounds elegant, and there is no reason to make it scarlet. I also see no reason to fault the use of dark, either. As for the Right, it does not sound as if ‘stained with fern-patterned longing’ (shinobu mojizuri) links with the remainder of the poem – from the beginning to ‘my heart’s depths’ (kokoro zo fukaki). The final ‘stained with fern-patterned longing’ seems to appear abruptly. Deepest indigo should win.