Saturday, 13 July 2013

Kokinshu #420

Saturday, 13 July 2013 08:20
lnhammer: lo-fi photo of a tall, thin man - caption: "some guy" (Default)
Written at Mt. Tamuke when the Suzaku Retired Emperor [Uda] journeyed to Nara.

    For this journey now
I couldn't even bring prayer strips.
    On Offering Hill,
a brocade of autumn leaves --
may the gods find them pleasing.

—31 December 2009, rev 3-9 April 2010, 28 June 2013

(Previously posted as Hyakunin Isshu #24 in a grammatically mangled form.) Original by Sugawara no Michizane. In the headnote, Uda is called Suzaku after his residence (see #230), and he took this particular excursion in the Tenth Month of 898. Ambiguities: Tamuke ("offering") could be a generic place or the name of a specific shrine along the road to Nara -- commentaries have extensively debated the issue -- and tabi could mean "trip," "occasion," or, pivotwise, both. For leaves as prayer strips, see #298ff.


kono tabi wa
nusa mo toriaezu
tamukeyama
momiji no nishiki
kami no manimani


---L.

About

Warning: contents contain line-breaks.

As language practice, I was translating classical Japanese poetry -- most recently, book 11 (love part 1) of the Kokinshu anthology. This project is, however, on hiatus. Past translations are archived here. Suggestions, corrections, and questions always welcome.

There's also original pomes in the journal archives.

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