[The Story of the Hyakunin Isshu] No. 66: ``There is no one who knows anything but the mountain cherry blossoms, who wish to be honored together.'' Former Grand Priest Shogyoson

No. 66: ``There is no one who knows better than the mountain cherry blossoms, who pray to us all.'' Former Grand Priest Shogyoson

I believe that an important keyword in medieval literature is the term ``bleaching poet,'' and Gyoson was the person who created this concept.
Gyoson's grandfather was a member of the Sanjo-in Temple, and his father Motohira was of such a venerable background that he rose to the rank of Councilor. However, after his father died when he was ten years old, Sue became a monk two years later and devoted herself to training at sacred sites such as Omine, Katsuragi, and Kumano, and rose to the rank of Grand Priest, the highest level of priesthood. There are great monks included in Hyakunin Isshu, such as Hensho in No. 12 and Jien in No. 95, but while they have a very secular flavor, Gyoson has a strong image of a monk in training. remain. Hyakunin Isshu Uta is perhaps the best example of this.

The lyrics of the collection of gold leaves say, ``At Omine, I unexpectedly saw the cherry blossoms blooming and read them,'' which shows that the poem was written during his training. When that happens, wild cherry blossoms are no longer just wild cherry blossoms. This was the light that was miraculously found in the midst of loneliness and despair, and for the author it was hope itself.

As you can imagine from Eizan's ``1000-day journey to the peak,'' it seems that training at that time was extremely harsh, and this is included in the ``Gyoson Daisojoshu'' before the Hyakunin Isshu poem.

``Even if I lose all the wild cherry blossoms, I wonder if they will survive the storm.'' (Gyoson)

"Let's go!" This is different from the gentle loneliness of No. 34's Kofu, in which the author was cornered.

By the way, the cherry blossoms at sacred sites have been sacred trees since Enno Gyoja carved the image of Zao Gongen into the cherry tree and made it the principal image when he opened Kinpusen-ji Temple, and it has since become a sacred tree and a symbol of Shugendo. It seems like it happened. Mt. Yoshino has continued to be protected and donated, becoming the current ``Senbonzakura.''
As Koronori Sakagami, the Sanju-Ichiban, wrote in a poem, from ancient times Mt. Yoshino was associated with snow, but it gradually changed to being a famous spot for cherry blossoms, which was due to the development of mountain worship. There it was.

Now, when we think of Yoshino's cherry blossoms, it is easy to think of Saigyo and others, but in reality, Saigyo was the one who aspired to become a simple aspirant named Gyoson, and who considered the cherry blossoms to be his only friend. No, I tried my best with the same sincerity. This is the same as Gyoson, and you can see it from the song he sings to the cherry blossoms.

“The flowers make me think of myself, and I look at the passing spring.” (Saigyou)

Saigyo, Sogi and Basho. If we are interested in the poets of bleaching, we must pay more attention to Gyoson, who was the pioneer.

(Written by Uchida Engaku, a poet)

List of “Hyakunin Isshu Stories”

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