Attendant to Empress Inpu’s “The Male Island’s female divers” (Hyakunin Isshu #90)

Translation Attendant to Empress Inpu (1130-1200) Look! The Male Island’s female divers— Their sleeves wetted too So wetted through The color cannot change Original Japanese Pronunciation 殷富門院大輔 Inpu Monin no Taifu 見せばやな Misebaya na 雄島のあまの Ojima no ama no 袖だにも Sode dani mo ぬれにぞぬれし Nure …

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Princess Shokushi’s “A string of pearls” (Hyakunin Isshu #89)

Translation Princess Shokushi (1149-1201) A string of pearls— If life dies out, die now; If living long I must Conceal my feelings I weaken so Original Japanese Pronunciation 式子内親王 Shokushi Naishinno 玉の緒よ Tama no o yo 絶えなば絶えね Taenaba taene ながらへば Nagaraeba しのぶることの Shinoburu koto no …

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Attendant to Empress Kōka’s “Must I devote myself for wading into passion?” (Hyakunin Isshu #88)

Translation By Attendant to Empress Kōka (~12th Century) A reed cut-off from Naniwa Bay— Must I devote myself For wading into Passion that night? Original Japanese Pronunciation 皇嘉門院別当 Kōka Moin no Betto 難波江の Naniwae no 芦のかりねの Ashi no karine no 一夜ゆへ Hitoyo yue 身をつくしてや Mi …

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Monk Jakuren’s “Foggy mist goes up through pines in autumn twilight” (Hyakunin Isshu #87)

Translation By Monk Jakuren (1139?-1202) A passing shower’s Dew as yet undried While foggy mist Goes up through pines In autumn twilight Original Japanese Pronunciation 寂蓮法師 Jakuren Hōshi むらさめの Murasame no 露もまだひぬ Tsuyu mo mada hinu まきの葉に Maki no ha ni 霧立ちのぼる Kiri tachinoboru 秋の夕暮 …

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Monk Saigyo’s “What an excuse” (Hyakunin Isshu #86)

Translation By Monk Saigyō (1118-1190) “Lament!” Says the moon As I ponder things— But what an excuse For my troubled face’s tears Original Japanese Pronunciation 西行法師 Saigyō Hōshi なげけとて Nageke tote 月やは物を Tsuki ya wa mono wo 思はする Omowasuru かこちがほなる Kakochi gao naru わがなみだかな Waga …

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Monk Shun’e, “Even the bedroom shutters are heartless” (Hyakunin Isshu #85)

Translation By Monk Shun’e (1113-1191?) All night An anxious night A sun that does not rise: For even the bedroom shutters Are heartless Original Japanese Pronunciation 俊恵法師 Shun’e Hōshi 夜もすがら Yo mo sugara 物思ふ頃は Mono omou koro wa 明けやらぬ Ake yaranu ねやのひまさへ Neya no hima …

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Fujiwara no Kiyosuke’s “If I live long I may reminisce” (Hyakunin Isshu #84)

Translation By Counselor Fujiwara no Kiyosuke (1104-1177) If I live long I may reminisce Of this time too; For now I miss that age When I saw the world with fear Original Japanese Pronunciation 藤原清輔朝臣 Fujiwara no Kiyosuke Ason ながらへば Nagaraeba またこの頃や Mata konogoro ya …

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Fujiwara no Toshinari’s “There too—the deers cry” (Hyakunin Isshu #83)

Translation Empress Dowager Steward, Fujiwara no Toshinari (1114-1204) Society’s midst A tearful path Desiring withdrawal The mountain depths But there too—the deers cry Original Japanese Pronunciation 皇太后宮大夫俊成 Kotaigogu no Daibu Toshinari 世の中よ Yo no naka yo 道こそなけれ Michi koso nakere 思ひ入る Omoi iru 山のおくにも Yama …

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Monk Doin’s “Grieving though life remains” (Hyakunin Isshu #82)

Translation By Monk Doin (1090-1182) Grieving Though life Remains And sadness cannot Endure the tears Original Japanese Pronunciation 道因法師 Doin Hōshi 思ひわび Omoi wabi さても命は Satemo inochi wa あるものを Aru mono wo 憂きに堪へぬは Uki ni taenu wa なみだなりけり Namida nari keri Literal Notes           Think/feel …

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Fujiwara no Sanesada’s “Cuckoo” (Hyakunin Isshu #81)

Translation By Minister of the Left Tokudaiji, Fujiwara no Sanesada (1139-1191) Cuckoo— I look in the Singing sound’s direction But only the morning Moon remains Original Japanese Pronunciation 後徳大寺左大臣 Go Tokudaiji no Sadaijin ほととぎす Hototogisu 鳴きつる方を Nakitsuru kata wo 眺むれば Nagamureba ただ有明の Tada ariake no …

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