I visited a house where the Ogura waka-poetry anthology was selected in the 12th century.
The Enri-an Temple (厭離庵) is located in the Arashiyama area of western Kyoto. Thanks to my mother who had the guts to look for it, while I was giving up.
We got lost in an isolated bamboo field looking for this hidden house. There was nothing around us (and it was super cold), and one local man passing through with a truck full of traditional Japanese gardening tools even asked, "Do you really want to visit there?"
My mother and I finally visited and spiritually said "hello" to two incredible poets, Rensyō and Fujiwara no Sadaie.
In my translation workshop, I often mention that the original waka poems were written on thick paper for dividers, sliding doors, and windows.
Rensyō asked Fujiwara no Sadaie to decorate his house, which is the origin of the anthology. This is not the original house, but there are definitely remnants of antient spirits here.
I was so thrilled to actually orient myself and breath in the atmosphere around!
I have been translating waka poems from the Japanese anthology Ogura Hyakunin Isshu ( 小倉百人一首 ), which is more simply referred to as Hyakuninisshu , meaning One Hundred Poets, One Waka Poem Each. It is a work of great literary-historical significance, and remains one of the most widely read and translated Japanese texts today.