[The Story of the Hyakunin Isshu] No. 12: “The figure of the maiden lingers for a while as the wind and clouds rise and the road blows shut.” (Sōjō Hensho)

No. 12: “The sky and the clouds blow and close, and the figure of the stop lingers for a while” (Sōjō Hensho)

The twelfth character is Sojo Hensho, and here the last Rokukasen appears, marking the end of the "Legendary Poets" chapter.

By the way, the preface to the kana poem says, ``Although Sojo Hensho was good at singing, he was not truly honest,'' which is understandable. I completely agree with the criticism that the style of the song is wonderful, but it lacks substance, and that although the surface is beautiful, the content is nothing but nonsense.

This Hyakunin Isshu poem is definitely of that type. He composes elegant phrases such as ``Heaven's wind and clouds pass through the streets...'' but what he wants to say is ``I want to see you forever, my beautiful sister.''
(Just to be sure, the song ``Otome'' refers to the five-section dancer, and is sung to represent the pretty dancer who decorates the Toyoake Festival.) Once upon a time, when Emperor Tenmu visited Yoshino, It is said that the origin is from the legend that the koto descended from the sky and danced to the tune of the harp played by the emperor.)

Now, regarding Hensho's antics, what is especially noteworthy about Yamato Monogatari is that I am more than surprised at the emotion he appears to have in the song he sings in response to Ono Komachi's invitation*1. This is because he is a monk, and has risen to the position of monk, the highest rank of priest. It is true that he composed these charming poems before becoming a priest. Hensho, whose common name was Ryoshimu Munesada, came from a noble background as the grandson of Emperor Kanmu, and became a priest upon the death of Emperor Ninmyo, who had received his patronage. However, if such a strong sexual desire disappears simply by leaving the world, I will not care.

So it probably never really disappeared. Hensho was liked by the distinguished guests. On the occasion of his 70th birthday, Kokoin sent him a song*2 that resembled a love song. Whether it's Narihira or Saneho, it is an unchanging truth that people like attractive men.

That's why I am one of those people who openly declares that I am a passionate Hensho fan. I've degraded him like some other erotic old man, but this is a way for me to use Hensho's first-class humor to help people become familiar with classical waka, which is often thought of as high-class literature.

*1 “The moss robe that turns us against the world must be put on just one layer, so we both sleep together.” (Sōjō Hensho)
*2 ``Hide and long, and you or Yachiyo will be happy'' (Kokoin)

(Written by: Engaku Uchida)

List of “Hyakunin Isshu Stories”

Learn the basics of waka poetry and try reciting it!

We are holding a "Utajuku" with the goal of learning from representative classical works and being able to compose traditional "Waka" on an individual basis!

季刊誌「和歌文芸」
令和六年冬号(Amazonにて販売中)

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