Poem by Minamoto no Muneyuki from the series One Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets Explained by the Nurse

Poem by Minamoto no Muneyuki from the series One Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets Explained by the Nurse

1835-36

Katsushika Hokusai 葛飾 北斎

(Japanese, 1760-1849)

Color woodblock print

Overall: 24.2 x 35.3 cm (9 1/2 x 13 7/8 in.)

The Kelvin Smith Collection, given by Mrs. Kelvin Smith 1985.327

Location

Description

This print by Katsushika Hokusai is inscribed with a melancholy poem by Minamoto no Muneyuki (died 939) on the upper right.

In the mountain village,
it is in winter that my loneliness
increases most,
when I think how both have dried up,
the grasses and people’s visits.

The mood of the hunters, however, contrasts with the poem. They appear to be merrily recounting stories of their hunting success while warming their hands around a roaring blaze. A long day in the winter cold has not dampened their spirits. With the bonfire, their straw winter gear, and the shelter of the hut at the right, they will enjoy both warmth and companionship this winter’s night.

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