Fujiwara no Akisuke

Fujiwara no Akisuke
Fujiwara no Akisuke in the Ogura Hyakunin Isshu.

Fujiwara no Akisuke

Fujiwara no Akisuke (藤原顕輔) was a member of the Fujiwara Clan living from 1090-1155AD. He was the son of Fujiwara no Akisue, father of Fujiwara no Kiyosuke,1 and adopted father of Kenshō34. He also went by the name of Rokujo Akisuke as he was a part of the Rokujo House of poetry34. During his life he is said to have been close to Minamoto no Toshiyori.

He inherited from his his father, his personal collection of poems, as well as a portrait of Kakinomoto no Hitomaro, which his father had painted. His son Kiyosuke later inherited the painting.

In 1144 he was approached by the Emperor Sutoku who commisioned him to compile the poetry anthology known as the Shikashū. He finally completed this in 1151.

In total we can find 84 of his poems in Imperial Anthologies1, as well as another 145 by him from his private collection known as the Akisuke shū.3  One of his poems (No.79) can be found in the Ogura Hyakuni Isshu and goes as follows:1

Japanese text2
Romanized Japanese1
English translation1
秋風に
たなびく雲の
たえまより
もれ出づる月の
かげのさやけさ
Akikaze ni
tanabiku kumo no
taema yori
more-izuru tsuki no
kage no sayakesa
Autumn breezes blow
long trailing clouds.
Through a break,
the moonlight-
so clear, so bright.

Footnotes

1. MacMillan, P. (2018) ”One Hundred Poets, One Poem Each: A Treasury of Classical Japanese Verse”. St. Ives: Penguin Classics.
2. Suzuki, H. et al. (1997) ”Genshoku: Ogura Hyakunin Isshu”. Tokyo: Bun’eidō.
3. Louis Frederic, translated by Kathe Roth (2002) “Japan Encyclopedia”. London: Harvard University Press.
4. Kodansha. (1993) ”Japan: An Illustrated Encyclopedia”. Tokyo: Kodansha Ltd.

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