Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Kokinshu #418

Tuesday, 9 July 2013 07:05
lnhammer: lo-fi photo of a tall, thin man - caption: "some guy" (Default)
When Prince Koretaka went hunting with some friends, they came to the bank of a place called Amanogawa, whereupon they drank sake. When the prince said, "Offer me up a cup while reciting a poem in the spirit of arriving at the beach of the River of Heaven (ama-no-gawa) while hunting," [Narihira] recited:

    I've hunted till dark:
let's hunt after lodgings from
    the Weaver Maiden --
for I've arrived at the beach
of the River of Heaven.

—20-27 June 2013

Original by Ariwara no Narihira. Textual issue: my base text has tanabatazume, which makes no sense -- the actual name is tanabata-tsu-me (spelled correctly in #175), "Tanabata Woman," where the tsu is a genitive marker; I've removed two dots to so emend it. For Koretaka, see #74. According to Tales of Ise, this and the next poem are from the same outing as #53, and again show Narihira playing the amusing courtier. Amanogawa, now written "heaven-field river," is a small tributary of the Yodo running through modern Hirakata City, about halfway between Kyoto and modern Osaka.

tanabatatsume ni
yado karamu
ama no kawara ni
ware wa kinikeri



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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