Seashore Snow Tanzaku
たちかえり なにはすが々さ きてもミん
tachikaeri/naniwa sugagasa/kite momin/yuki omoshiroku/awajima yama Rengetsu
In my Naniwa straw hat
I gaze upon the
Snow white face of
Naniwa is an old name for the Osaka area. Naniwa straw is a famous product of that district, and Rengetsu picked up a Naniwa straw hat to protect her from the snow on her way home. Awajima is a large island in the Inland Sea. The highest peak on Awajima is Mt. Yuzuruwa. Omoshiroku means both “white face” and “delightful” so the one word has the sense of the mountain being both “pure white and perfectly delightful.”
The poem (#207 in Ama no Karumo) is brushed on a tanzaku strip of colored paper. The brushwork is elegant, bold, and confident, expertly placed within the confines of the space.