MAKURA NO SOSHI: A WOMAN WHO LOVES INSECTS
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Saturday, September 28, 2002
Ten Autumn Tankas by Princess Shikishi (c. 1150-1201)


I sleep light toward morning: different on my sleeves, my old fan stirs autumn's first wind.


As I watch, through leaves moves the evening moon, giving some hint of the autumnal sky.


Cicadas' voices exhausted on the hillside, when, again, the sunset bell startles.


In my deserted garden, wrapped in sedge, in the depth of dew, a pine cricket's voice.


At my gate, startled by the wind across rice fields: there beyond the mist, the first voices of geese?


The autumn night, quiet, dark; rain beats the window griefstricken until it turns white.


Dew, yes; as I part the field, bamboo grass field, the voices of insects shatter on my sleeves.


Under the blown and settled dead leaves, a cricket: here at least, autumn still flickers.


Autumn is late, and my thoughts are desolate. Do not add tears, moonlight in my sleeves.


Is it to tell the geese of the autumn wind? Fireflies rising close to the evening clouds.
Posted by Artichoke Heart | 5:58 PM |
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