The Right state: the central line of the Left’s poem is stiff. The Left state: the Right’s poem has no particular faults.
In judgement: the statements in regard to both poems are at variance with my own opinion. I will refrain from expressing that here, although I do regret that, somewhat. If, indeed, a central line is core, then it is better for it to lack connection with the remainder of the poem. In the case of the Left’s poem, however, it seems well linked with what follows. As for the Right’s poem, ‘bedchamber the flooding moon’ (neya moru tsuki) is not phrasing which is acceptable to me. However, the Left’s initial section seems pleasant, and the Right’s final section is elegant. Thus, the round is a tie.
The Right state: does the Left’s poem really expresses the love of drifting clouds? The Left state: the Right’s poem is more suited to the topic of ‘Love and Smoke’.
In judgement: with regard to the Left’s poem, Lady Sagami’s poem from the Eishō Imperial Palace Poetry Competition: ‘Before I know it/In my heart, sky-bound/is my love’ (itsu to naku/kokoro sora naru/wa ga koi ya) would be a good prior example, but this poem inserts ‘drifting clouds’ (ukigumo ya), which is illogical. As for the Right’s poem, ‘To your dwelling will I drift and descend?’ (kimi ga yado ni ya wakite shiguren) sounds fine. Thus, and for this reason, the Right wins.