So, as a result of reading the book The world of the Shining Prince I’ve switched back to Genji Monogatari/Heian period addiction again lol
Yesterday I was reading the chapter dealing with religion and its influence on classical literature and the author proposed two beautiful waka poems that embodies the connection between poetry and buddhist belief.
世の中を なになげかまし 山桜 花見る程の 心なりせば
暗きより 暗き道にぞ 入りぬべき 遥かに照らせ 山の端の月
The former is by Murasaki Shikibu, the latter by Izumi Shikibu. Personally I prefer the first one, but I have to admit that my opinion is biased xD Putting aside my preferences, I think that the one by Izumi exemplifies more accurately the influence of religion because according to the book her verses remind a passage of a buddhist text. And its pathos is emphasized by the fact that the author is thought to have written it on her death bed.
The two poems are translated in this way:
This world of ours/ Why should we lament it?/ Let us view it as we do the cherries/ That blossom on the hills
Out of the dark/ Into the dark path/ I must now enter:/ Shine on me from afar/ Moon of the mountain fringe!
The translation doesn’t preserves the beauty of Classical Japanese, but it helps to understand the meaning of the two poems (: