Sunday, 30 October 2016

The Tamakura Problem

#Priest SOGI #spring #waka #LateHeian #tamakura

SOOGI a Zen Priest 1421-1502was noted for writing Waka Renga and Haiku.

This poem is GSRJ XV 480 and also appears in Miner.

Yo o samumi 
Ume ga ka chikaki
Tamakura ni 
Tsuki wa kasumite 
Harukaze zo fuku

Night of cold or Cold World

(Soogi was of commoner background and a priest)

Plum blossom scent nearby chikaki = chikashii

on arm pillow  Miner adds a reference to tears on sleeves that is NOT in the Japanese text !

A Zen priest with an arm pillow I get stuck here

Either in this case Tamakura might be a place name or he's not just refering to his sleeves but to everyone present or he's being very ironic given he was to my knowledge not like Ikkyu

I cant shake off the feeling he's used a simple cliched phrase and given it multiple levels of irony

moon blurring dim hazy sprint mist? the thickness of pollen?

spring wind emphatic particle blows

The first part of this pillow is quite "normal" but what is a Zen priest doing and where

I would love to know if there was ever a place near Kyoto anywhere in Japan called Tamakura.

Frankly I could see the Japanese calling a hamlet or remote hermitage thats nestled between hills "arm pillow".

If there is a double or triple meaning that adds so much more depth to the poem.


Sorry there's no Kanji but my laptop died and I'm using a library terminal!

Please help me get a new or used refurbished laptop ASAP

paypal.me/JulieVaux