Oriori no Uta : Poems for All Seasons

As far as eye could see
there were no blossoms
or scarlet leaves:
On the shore a thatched hut
in the autumn dusk

Fujiwara no Teika

From Shinkokinshū, Scroll 4, Autumn 1. The third of that collection’s “Three Evening Poems.” A seacoast on an autumn evening that has neither of those symbols of seasonal beauty, the cherry blossoms of spring or the scarlet maples of autumn. There is only a coarse fisherman’s cottage roofed with thatch. It is a simple poem in terms of its words, but the heart is moved by seeing in that view a lonely beauty deeper than that of the more colorful cherry blossoms and maple leaves. That is why admirers of Teika in later ages were drawn to this poem and it became one of the most famous of Japanese classical poems.


見わたせば (Miwataseba)(hana)(mo)紅葉(momiji)(mo)  なかりけり(nakarikeri) (Ura)(no)苫屋(tomaya)(no) (aki)(no)夕暮(yūgure)

藤原定家(ふじわらの ていか)