Inawashiro Kensai (猪苗代兼載)

Kensai INAWASHIRO (1452 - July 21, 1510) was a renga poet (linked-verse poet) in the Sengoku period (period of warring states) (Japan). He initially called himself Koshun/Soshun. His other names were Soenbo and Kokanken. He was conferred Hokyo (the third highest rank of Buddhist priest).

He was born to the family of the lord of Inawashiro-jo Castle in Mutsu Province (later became Iwashiro Province) in Aizu and became a priest in his childhood. When he was 19 years old, he participated in 'Kawagoe senku' (event of renga held at Kawagoe-jo Castle), learned from Shinkei and became acquainted with Sogi IO. His activities in the renga society was remarkable and he became the manager and instructor of Kitano Renga-kaisho (place of a gathering of renga poets) at the age of 38. With the support of Masahiro Ouchi of Suo Province, Yamaguchi, he also participated in the compilation work of 'Shinsen Tsukubashu' (New Collection of Renga Poems of Tsukuba) led by Sogi IO. He went to the Kanto region when he was 50, visited various places, and died in Koga of Shimosa Province. In the meantime, he learned waka poem from Gyoe of Nijo school. Along with Sogi IO, he built up the golden age of renga.

He compiled 'Enjin' which is his personal collection of renga, and 'Shinkei sozu teikun,' 'Baikunsho,' and 'Kensaizotan' which were his theory books on renga.

[Original Japanese]