Composed on the night when coming-of-age ceremonies were held for the son and daughter of the Captain of the Outer Palace Guards, in the Twelfth Month, Shōhei 5 .
ōhara ya oshio no yama no komatsubara haya kodaka kare chiyo no kage min In Ōhara On Oshio Mountain Among the young pine groves Fly swiftly, fledgling hawk, For you will see the light of a thousand generations! Ki no Tsurayuki
eda goto ni iku sono chiyo o chigiruran sono kamiyo yori iki no matsubara In every single branch Does live the thousand-generation Vow, perhaps? Enduring since the Age of Gods, The sacred pine groves of Iki.
Love Separated by Distant Roads 隔遠路恋
koishinade iki no matsubara ikitari to tsuge dani yaranu michi no harukesa I’ll not die of love, but As the pine groves at Iki Live on – Even that, I cannot proclaim, So long is the road between us…
When a woman who had long been an acquaintence of Left Middle Captain Naritoki departed for Tsukushi, Lord Sanekata, went as a messenger to Usa, and she gave this to him out of concern.
keFu made Fa
iki no matubara
wa ga mi no usa ni
nagekite zo Furu Up until today
Among the pine groves of Iki
Have I lived, yet
In my desolation
Am I drowned in grief.
The Daughter of Fujiwara no Nochiō
awazu wa usa ya
kokoro zukushi ni
iki no matsubara Paying a visit and
Not meeting: the despair
Reaches new heights,
Exhausting my heart, as a journey to
Iki in Matsubara!
chigiri mo shirazu
hono mishi nobe ni
mayoinuru kana Go, and I will meet her!
Heedless of if such a bond exists,
The miscanthus fronds
Briefly glimpsed across the fields,
Drive me to confusion!
The Gentlemen of the Left and Right state the opposing team’s poem lacks thought.
Shunzei’s judgement: The Left draws excessively on conceits of Kyushu. In the Right’s poem, ‘confusion in the fields’ (
nobe no mayoi) does not seem to lead anywhere. Both of these poems lack any real conception other than their use of conceits. The round ties.
Written when on a visit to the province of Ise in the tenth month of the twelfth year of Tenpyō (743).
imo ni koi
waka no matsubara
shioi no kata ni
tazu nakiwataru Thinking of my love,
At Matsubara in Waka,
As I look out
Across the mud-flats
A crane’s cry drifts across, and I go weeping on my way.
Emperor Shōmu (701-756, r. 724-749)