The English translation of Ogura Hyakunin Isshu
from Hyakunin-Isshu (Single Songs of a Hundred Poets)
and Nori no Hatsu-Ne (The Dominant Note of the Law)
by Clay MacCauley
Yokohama: Kelly and Walsh, Ltd., 1917


Tenchi Tenno

Coarse the rush-mat roof
Sheltering the harvest-hut
Of the autumn rice-field;--
And my sleeves are growing wet
With the moisture dripping through.


Jito Tenno

Spring, it seems, has passed,
And the summer come again;
For the silk-white robes,
So 'tis said, are spread to dry
On the "Mount of Heaven's Perfume."


Kakinomoto no Hitomaro

Ah! the foot-drawn trail
Of the mountain-pheasant's tail
Drooped like down-curved branch!--
Through this long, long-dragging night
Must I keep my couch alone?


Yamabe no Akahito

When to Tago's coast
I the way have gone, and see
Perfect whiteness laid
On Mount Fuji's lofty peak
By the drift of falling snow.


Sarumaru Tayu

In the mountain depths,
Treading through the crimson leaves,
Cries the wandering stag.
When I hear the lonely cry,
Sad,--how sad--the autumn is!


Chunagon Yakamochi

If the "Magpie Bridge"--
Bridge by flight of magpies spanned,--
White with frost I see:--
With a deep-laid frost made white:--
Late, I know, has grown the night.


Abe no Nakamaro

When I look abroad
O'er the wide-stretched "Plain of Heaven,"
Is the moon the same
That on Mount Mikasa rose,
In the land of Kasuga?


Kisen Hoshi

Lowly hut is mine
South-east from the capital:--
Thus I choose to dwell;--
And the world in which I live
Men have named a "Mount of Gloom."


Ono no Komachi

Color of the flower
Has already passed away
While on trivial things
Vainly I have set my gaze,
In my journey through the world.



Truly, this is where
Travelers who go or come
Over parting ways,--
Friends or strangers,--all must meet;
'Tis the gate of "Meeting Hill."


Sangi Takamura

O'er the wide, wide sea,
Towards its many distant isles,
Rowing I set forth.
This, to all the world proclaim,
O ye boats of fisher-folk!


Sojo Henjo

O ye Winds of Heaven!
In the paths among the clouds
Blow, and close the ways,
That we may these virgin forms
Yet a little while detain.


Yozei In

From Tsukuba's peak,
Falling waters have become
Mina's still, full flow:
So my love has grown to be;
Like the river's quiet deeps.


Kawara no Sadaijin

Michinoku print
Of shinobu's tangled leaves!
For whose sake have I,
Like confused, begun to be?
Only yours! I can not change!


Koko Tenno

It is for thy sake
That I seek the fields in spring,
Gathering green herbs,
While my garment's hanging sleeves
Are with falling snow beflecked.


Chunagon Yukihira

Though we parted be;
If on Mount Inaba's peak
I should hear the sound
Of the pine trees growing there,
Back at once I'll make my way.


Ariwara no Narihira Ason

I have never heard
That, e'en when the gods held sway
In the ancient days,
E'er was water bound with red
Such as here in Tatta's stream


Fujiwara no Toshiyuki Ason

Lo! the gathered waves
On the shore of Sumi's bay!
E'en in gathered night,
When in dreams I go to thee,
I must shun the eyes of men.



Even for a space
Short as joint of tiny reed
From Naniwa's marsh,
We must never meet again
In this life? This, do you ask?


Motoyoshi Shinno

Now, in dire distress,
It is all the same to me!
So, then, let us meet
Even though it costs my life
In the Bay of Naniwa.


Sosei Hoshi

Just because she said,
"In a moment I will come,"
I've awaited her
E'en until the moon of dawn,
In the long month, hath appeared.


Bunya no Yasuhide

Since 'tis by its breath
Autumn's leaves of grass and trees
Riven are and waste,--
Men may to the mountain wind
Fitly given the name, "The Wild."


Oe no Chisato

Gaze I at the moon,
Myriad things arise in thought,
And my thoughts are sad;--
Yet, 'tis not for me alone,
That the autumn time has come.


Kan Ke

At the present time,
Since no offering I could bring,
See, Mount Tamuke!
Here are brocades of red leaves,
At the pleasure of the god.


Sanjo Udaijin

If thy name be true,
Trailing vine of "Meeting Hill,"
Is there not some way
Whereby, without ken of men,
I can draw thee to my side?


Teishin Ko

If the maple leaves
On the ridge of Ogura
Have the gift of mind,
They will longingly await
One more august pilgrimage.


Chunagon Kanesuke

Over Mika's plain,
Gushing forth and flowing free,
Is Izumi's stream.
I know not if we have met:
Why, then, do I long for her?


Minamoto no Muneyuki Ason

Winter loneliness
In a mountain hamlet grows
Only deeper, when
Guests are gone, and leaves and grass
Withered are;--so runs my thought.


Oshikochi no Mitsune

If it were my wish
White chrysanthemum to cull;--
Puzzled by the frost
Of the early autumn time,
I by chance might pluck the flower.


Mibu no Tadamine

Like the morning moon,
Cold, unpitying was my love.
Since that parting hour,
Nothing I dislike so much
As the breaking light of day.


Sakanoue no Korenori

At the break of day,
Just as though the morning moon
Lightened the dim scene,
Yoshino's fair hamlet lay
In a haze of falling snow.


Harumichi no Tsuraki

In a mountain stream,
Builded by the busy wind,
Is a wattled-barrier drawn.
Yet 'tis only maple leaves
Powerless to flow away.


Ki no Tomonori

In the cheerful light
Of the ever-shining Sun,
In the days of spring;
Why, with ceaseless, restless haste
Falls the cherry's new-blown bloom?


Fujiwara no Okikaze

Whom then are there now,
In my age (so far advanced)
I can hold as friends?
Even Takasago's pines
Are not friends of former days.


Ki no Tsurayuki

No! no! As for man,
How his heart is none can tell,
But the plum's sweet flower
In my birthplace, as of yore,
Still emits the same perfume.


Kiyowara no Fukayabu

In the summer night,
While the evening still seems here,
Lo! the dawn has come.
In what region of the clouds
Has the wandering moon found place?


Bunya no Asayasu

In the autumn fields,
When the heedless wind blows by
O'er the pure-white dew,
How the myriad unstrung gems
Everywhere are scattered round!



Though forgotten now,
For myself I do not care:
He, by oath, was pledged;--
And his life, who is forsworn,
That is, ah! so pitiful.


Sanji Hitoshi

Bamboo-growing plain,
With a small-field bearing reeds!
Though I bear my lot,
Why is it too much to bear?
Why do I still love her so?


Taira no Kanemori

Though I would conceal,
In my face it yet appears,--
My fond, secret love:--
So much that he asks of me,
"Does not something trouble you?"


Mibu no Tadami

Though, indeed, I love,
Yet, the rumor of my love
Had gone far and wide,
When no man, ere then, could know
That I had begun to love.


Kiyowara no Motosuke

Have we not been pledged
By the wringing of our sleeves,--
Each for each in turn,--
That o'er Sue's Mount of Pines
Ocean waves shall never pass?


Chunagon Atsutada

Having met my love,
Afterwards my passion was,
When I measured it
With the feeling of the past,
As, if then, I had not loved.


Chunagon Asatada

If a trysting time
There should never be at all,
I should not complain
For myself (oft left forlorn),
Or of her (in heartless mood).


Kentoku Ko

Sure that there is none
Who will speak a pitying word,
I shall pass away.
Ah! my death shall only be
My own folly's (fitting end).


Sone no Yoshitada

Like a mariner
Sailing over Yura's strait
With his rudder gone,--
Whither, o'er the deep of love,
Lies the goal, I do not know.


Eikei Hoshi

To the humble cot,
Overgrown with thick-leaved vines
In its loneliness,
Comes the dreary autumn time;--
And not even man is there.


Minamoto no Shigeyuki

Like a driven wave,
Dashed by fierce winds on a rock,
So it is, alas!
Crushed and all alone am I;
Thinking over what has been.


Onakatomi no Yoshinobu Ason

Like the warder's fires
At the Imperial gateway kept,--
Burning through the night,
Through the day in ashes dulled,--
Is the love aglow in me.


Fujiwara no Yoshitaka

For thy precious sake,
Once my (eager) life itself
Was not dear to me.
But 'tis now my heart's desire
It may long, long years endure.


Fujiwara no Sanekata Ason

That, 'tis as it is,
How can I make known to her?
So, she may n'er know
That the love I feel for her
Like Ibuki's moxa burns.


Fujiwara no Michinobu Ason

Though I know full well
That the night will come again
E'en when day has dawned,
Yet, in truth, I hate the sight
Of the morning's coming light.


Udaisho Michitsuna no Haha

Sighing all alone,
Through the long watch of the night,
Till the break of day:--
Can you realize at all
What a tedious thing it is?


Gido Sanshi no Haha

If "not to forget"
Will for him in future years
Be too difficult;--
It were well this very day
That my life, ah me! should close.


Fujiwara no Kinto

Though the waterfall
In its flow ceased long ago,
And its sound is stilled;
Yet, in name it ever flows,
And in fame may yet be heard.


Lady Izumi Shikibu

Soon I cease to be;--
One fond memory I would keep
When beyond this world.
Is there, then, no way for me
Just once more to meet with thee?


Lady Murasaki Shikibu

Meeting in the way--,
While I can not clearly know
If 'tis friend or not;--
Lo! the midnight moon, ah me!
In a cloud has disappeared.


Daini no Sanmi

If Mount Arima
Sends his rustling winds across
Ina's bamboo-plains;--
Well! in truth, tis as you say;
Yet how can I e'er forget?


Akazome Emon

Better to have slept
Care-free, than to keep vain watch
Through the passing night,
Till I saw the lonely moon.
Traverse her descending path.


Koshikibu no Naishi

As, by Oe's mount
And o'er Iku's plain, the way
Is so very far,--
I have not yet even seen


Ise no Osuke

Eight-fold cherry flowers
That at Nara,--ancient seat
Of Our State,--have bloomed;--
In Our Nine-fold Palace court
Shed their sweet perfume today


Sei Shonagon

Though in middle night,
By the feigned crow of the cock,
Some may be deceived;--
Yet, at Ausaka's gate
This can never be achieved.


Sakyo no Tayu Michimasa

Is there now no way,
But through others' lips, to say
These so fateful words,--
That, henceforth, my love for you
I must banish from my thoughts?


Gon-Chunagon Sadayori

Lo! at early dawn,
When the mists o'er Uji's stream
Slowly lift and clear,
And the net-stakes on the shoals,
Near and far away, appear!



Even when my sleeves,
Through my hate and misery,
Never once are dry,--
For such love my name decays:--
How deplorable my lot!


Saki no Daisojo Gyoson

Let us, each for each
Pitying, hold tender thought,
Mountain-cherry flower!
Other than thee, lonely flower,
There is none I know as friend.


Suwo no Naishi

If, but through the dreams
Of a spring's short night, I'd rest
Pillowed on this arm,
And my name were blameless stained,
Hard, indeed, would be my fate.



If, against my wish,
In the world of sorrows still,
I for long should live;--
How then I would pine, alas!
For this moon of middle-night.


Noin Hoshi

By the wind-storm's blast,
From Mimuro's mountain slopes
Maples leaves are torn,
And as (rich) brocades, are wrought
On (blue) Tatta's (quiet) stream.


Ryozen Hoshi

In my loneliness
From my humble home gone forth,
When I looked around,
Everywhere it was the same;--
One lone, darkening autumn eve.


Dainagon Tsunenobu

When the evening comes,
From the rice leaves at my gate
Gentle knocks are heard;
And, into my round rush-hut,
Autumn's roaming breeze makes way.


Yushi Naishinno-Ke no Kii

Well I know the fame
Of the fickle waves that beat
On Takashi's strand!
Should I e'er go near that shore
I should only wet my sleeves.


Gon-Chunagon Masafusa

On that distant mount,
O'er the slope below the peak,
Cherries are in flower;--
May the mists of hither hills
Not arise to veil the scene.


Minamoto no Toshiyori Ason

I did not make prayer
(At the shrine of Mercy's God),
That the unkind one
Should become as pitiless
As the storms of Hase's hills.


Fujiwara no Mototoshi

Though your promise was
"Like the dew on moxa plant"
And, to me, was life;
Yet, alas! the year has passed
Even into autumn time.


Hoshoji no Nyudo Saki no Kwampaku Daijo-Daijin

O'er the wide sea plain,
As I row and look around,
It appears to me
That the white waves, far away,
Are the ever shining sky.



Though a swift stream be
By a rock met and restrained
In impetuous flow,
Yet, divided, it speeds on,
And at last unites again.


Minamoto no Kanemasa

Guard of Suma's Gate,
From your sleep, how many nights
Have you waked at cries
Of the plaintive sanderlings,
Migrant from Awaji's isle?


Sakyo no Tayu Akisuke

See, how clear and bright
Is the moon-light finding ways
'Mong the riven clouds
That, with drifting autumn-wind,
Gracefully float o'er the sky!


Taiken Mon-In no Horikawa

If it be for aye
That he wills our love should last?
Ah! I do not know!
And this morn my anxious thoughts,
Like my black hair, are confused.


Fujiwara no Sanesada

When I turned my look
Toward the place whence I had heard
Lo! the only object there
Was the moon of early dawn.


Doin Hoshi

Though in deep distress
(Through the cruel blow), my life
Still is left to me:--
But my tears I can not keep;
They can not my grief endure.


Kwotai Kogu no Tayu Toshinari

Ah! within the world,
Way of flight I find nowhere.
I had thought to hide
In the mountains' farthest depths;
Yet e'en there the stag's cry sounds.


Fujiwara no Kiyosuke Ason

If I long should live,
Then, perchance, the present days
May be dear to me;--
Just as past time fraught with grief
Now comes fondly back in thought.


Shunye Hoshi

Now,-- as through the night
Longingly I pass the hours,
And the day's dawn lags,--
E'en my bedroom's crannied doors
Heartless are, indeed, to me.


Saigyo Hoshi

Is it then the moon
That has made me sad, as though
It had bade me grieve?
Lifting up my troubled face,--
Ah! the tears, the (mournful) tears!


Jakuren Hoshi

Lo, an autumn eve!
See the deep vale's mists arise
Mong the fir-tree's leaves
That still hold the dripping wet
Of the (chill day's) sudden showers.


Kwoka Mon-In no Betto

For but one night's sake,
Short as is a node of reed
Grown in Naniwa bay,
Must I, henceforth, long for him
With my whole heart, till life's close?


Shokushi Naishinno

Life! Thou string of gems!
If thou art to end, break now.
For, if yet I live,
All I do to hide ( my love)
May at last grow weak (and fail).


Impu Mon-In no Taiu

Let me show him these!
E'en the fisherwomen's sleeves
On Ojima's shores,
Though wet through and wet again,
Do not change their dyer's hues.


Go-Kyogoku no Sessho Daijodaijin

On a chilling mat,
Drawing close my folded quilt,
I must sleep alone,
While all through the frosty night
Sounds a cricket's (forlorn chirp).


Nijo-no-In no Sanuki

Like a rock at sea,
E'en at ebb-tide hid from view,
Is my tear-drenched sleeve:--
Never for a moment dry,
And unknown in human ken.


Kamakura no Udaijin

Would that this, our world,
Might be ever as it is!
What a lovely scene!
See that fisherwoman's boat,
Rope-drawn, rowed along the beach.


Sangi Masatsune

From Mount Yoshino
Blows a chill, autumnal wind,
In the deepening night.
Cold the ancient hamlet is;--
Sounds of beating cloth I hear.


Saki no Daisojo Jien

Though I am not fit,
I have dared to shield the folk
Of this woeful world
With my black-dyed (sacred) sleeve:--
I, who live on Mount Hiei.


Nyudo Saki no Daijo-Daijin

Not the snow of flowers,
That the hurrying wild-wind drags
Round the garden court,
Is it that here, withering, falls:--
That in truth is I, myself.


Gon-Chunagon Sadaie

Like the salt sea-weed,
Burning in the evening calm,
On Matsuo's shore,
All my being is aglow,
Waiting one who does not come.


Jozammi Karyu

Lo! at Nara's brook
Evening comes, and rustling winds
Stir the oak-trees' leave;--
Not a sign of summer left
But the sacred bathing there.


Go Toba-no-In

For some men I grieve;--
Some men are hateful to me;--
And this wretched world
To me, weighted down with care,
Is a place of misery.



O Imperial House!
When I think of former days,
How I long for thee!
More than e'en the clinging vines
Hanging 'neath thine ancient eaves.

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