A working space for my notes on Ogura Hyakunin Isshu - a classical Japanese anthology of 100 poems by 100 poets. My thanks to Jane Reichhold and fellow members of the AHApoetry Forum for their encouragement, advice and participation; and also to my fellow fellow members of Eratosphere for their comments and suggestions.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

#004 田子の浦に

田子の浦に
打ち出でてみれば
白妙の
富士の高嶺に
雪はふりつつ 

Tago no ura ni uchi-idete mireba shirotae no fuji no taka ne ni yuki wa furitsutsu

Yamabe no Akahito



along Tago bay
when we head out then we see
the exquisite white
peak of lofty Mount Fuji
while snow still falls upon it

(trans. Köy Deli)
on Tago beach
as we depart we see
pure white
on Fuji's lofty peak
snow is falling

(trans. Jane Reichhold)
Jane Reichhold remarks: I see a pivot and tanka twist working here. In the first three lines the white could be spindrift on the waves on the beach /surf/shore but then it switches the scene to Mt. Fuji and the snow explains the whiteness there.  Very classic tanka technique. The fact that artists show us one can see Mr. Fuji from Tago Bay increases my acceptance of this. 

Shore of Tago Bay 
source : wikicommons (Public Domain)


Tago no ura ni 
Tago | of | bay | case particle (to, in, on, into, at)
Uchi idete mireba 
(with force/vigour) set(ting) out from| when (I, we, they, s/he,it )see(s)/look(s)
Shirotae no (Pillow-word modifier)
Pure white | of 
Fuji no takane ni 
Fuji |of | lofty, tall peak| case particle (to, in, on, into, at)
Yuki wa furitsutsu 
Snow | is | falling |conjunctive particle (while)



Tago
田子
Place name
– ta -  field, rice field,
4
– ko –
child; sign of the rat; 11PM-1AM; first sign of Chinese zodiac
no
Genitive particle : 's; of
ura


4
ni
Locative particle : in, on, at, into
uchi
打ち
strike; hit; knock; pound; dozen
adds vigour, force as a prefix strengthening  a verb
4
ide-te
出で
exit; leave; go out; come out; put out; protrude;  set forth, set out;

4
te
Conjunctive particle
mireba
みれば
When...sees/looks


shirotae
白妙
Pillow word modifier of things that are white
- white
2, 4
– tae - Myō - exquisite; strange; queer; mystery; miracle; excellent; delicate; charming

Fuji
富士
Place name
– tomi -wealth; enrich; abundant
4
– shi -gentleman; samurai; samurai radical
takane
高嶺
lofty
– taka - tall; high; expensive
4
– mine - peak; summit
yuki
snow

4
wa
particle : is, am, are
furi
ふり
fall

4
-tsutsu
つつ 
Conjunctive particle : while

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