I’m posting this a few days later than I intended to–classes started last week and I was just too busy. Since I missed my “one post per week” quota, WordPress started sending me nasty e-mails and calling me at work. If you were wondering what happened to all those people who used to work for Columbia House, well I guess they all found jobs at WordPress…!
|山かすむ月一時に館立て||Yama kasumu tsuki itsu toki ni ie tachite||Spring mists rising from the mountain
shroud the evening moon above the hall
These poems I have been posting are all part of one massive linked-verse poetry session (think something along the lines of rapper’s freestyle-battle–that’s actually a pretty accurate comparison). The first poet, Kakei (荷兮), gave us the the initial stanza (in the 5-7-5 syllable pattern). The next poet, Jūgo (重五), gave us the 2nd stanza in a 7-7 syllable pattern continuing the spring theme introduced by Kakei. Now, the third poet, Ūto (雨桐), gives us the 3rd stanza again in the 5-7-5 syllable pattern.
Itsutoki/ittoki and ie gave me some problems. There meanings don’t precisely come out in my translation. Itsutoki/ittoki [一時] is about midnight to 2:00 am. (if I’m not mistaken…??) The other, ie [館] I just translated as “hall,” but it could mean a hall/large building on a temple-grounds, or a lodge for travelers.
Spring mists: I certainly think of mists/fog in spring. One morning at Susquehanna we were out on the river practicing, probably at around 6:00 or so. It was during the spring season, so it would’ve been March, maybe. We shoved off, rowed out about 700 meters or so, when all of a sudden this thick, thick fog rolled in. We couldn’t see a damn thing, like, not even the hands in front of our faces. Our coach was in a launch and told us to get back to the dock ASAP–we couldn’t even see him. It was pretty nerve-racking. Especially since the current is so strong there and because there is a massive dam/waterfall not far from the dock. If you over shoot the dock the current to the dam gets really strong, and unlike at Boathouse Row, there aren’t emergency/safety ropes to catch you (or rather, for you to catch and hold on to for dear life.)