Tag Archives: silver grass

GSS VII: 353

From the Poetry Contest held by the Empress Dowager during the reign of the Kanpyō emperor. 花薄そよともすれば秋風の吹くかとぞ聞くひとり寝る夜は

soyo tomo sureba
akikaze no
Fuku ka to zo kiku
Fitori nuru yo Fa
When the silver grass fronds
Rustle all together,
I wonder if ‘tis our autumn wind
Blowing that I hear,
Tonight, as I sleep alone…

Ariwara no Muneyana

Love VIII: 3

Left (Tie)

hito no keshiki no
akikaze ni
kokoro no soko no
kaya ga shitaore
I did rely on
Him, but now in his look, is
The autumn wind; in
The depths of my heart are
Broken, drooping fronds of silver grass…

Lord Ari’ie


asamashi ya
nado ka omoi no
tsuyu mo okiaezu
hate wa moyuran
How strange it is!
Why is it that my love’s fires, like
Not completely covered by the dew
Will at the end burst into flame once more?


The Right state: the Left’s poem has no faults to indicate. The Left state: in the Later Collection of Gleanings there is a poem about Ibuki, which uses ‘burst into flame’ (moyu). We wonder about the suitability of using ‘burst into flame’ without also using Ibuki. The Right, in response: older poems used ‘burst entirely into flame’ (sashimoyu), and this composition is the same.

In judgement: I am not accustomed to hearing ‘the depths of my heart are silver grass’ (kokoro no soko no kaya) as in the Left’s poem. The image in the Right’s poem of moxa not completely covered with dew bursting into flame seems rather overblown. The strengths and weaknesses of the two poems are unclear, so the round should tie.

MYS VIII: 1538

[One of] two poems composed by Yamanoue no Okura listing the flowers of the autumn fields.


pagi no pana
wobana kudupana
nadesiko no pana
mata pudibakama
asagapo no pana
Bush clover blooms,
Silver grass and kudzu,
And fujibakama,
Morning glory blooms.

Yamanoue no Okura