Tag Archives: plovers

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

Love VIII: 16

Left
玉章のたえだえになるたぐひかな雲井に雁の見えみ見えずみ

tamazusa no
taedae ni naru
tagui kana
kumoi ni kari no
miemi miezumi
His jewelled missives
Have become intermittent
It seems, just like
The geese up in the skies,
Glimpsed, and then not seen at all…

Lord Ari’ie
1051

Right (Win)
思かぬる夜はの袂に風ふけて涙の河に千鳥鳴くなり

omoikanuru
yowa no tamoto ni
kaze fukete
namida no kawa ni
chidori nakunari
Unable to bear my love,
At midnight my sleeve is
Stirred by the wind, and
Upon a river of tears
The plovers are crying…

Nobusada
1052

The Gentlemen of the Right state: we find no faults to mention in the Left’s poem. The Gentlemen of the Left state: we wonder about the reason for emphasising ‘upon a river of tears the plovers’ (namida no kawa ni chidori).

In judgement: the Left on a lover’s letters becoming intermittent, and saying ‘the geese up in the skies, glimpsed, and then not seen at all’ (kumoi ni kari no miemi miezumi) has a charming conception, and elegant diction. The Right, saying ‘at midnight my sleeve is stirred by the wind’ (yowa no tamoto ni kaze fukete) and continuing ‘the plovers are crying’ (chidori nakunari) has a configuration and diction which sounds fine, too. The criticisms of the Gentlemen of the Left are nothing more than ‘a fisherman fishing beneath his pillow’! Although the conception of the Left’s poem is charming, the configuration of the Right’s poem is slightly more notable, so it should win.