Shinyo Wakashu (Collection of New Pages) (新葉和歌集)

Shinyo Wakashu is a collection of waka poetry compiled during the period of the Northern and Southern Courts (Japan). It is considered a quasi-Imperial anthology of waka poems. The selector was Imperial Prince Muneyoshi (1311-ca. 1385), a son of the Emperor Godaigo. It was submitted to the Emperor for inspection on December 3 in 1381, in the reign of the Southern Dynasty Emperor Chokei. It consists of twenty volumes, containing about 1420 poems. The poems were classified in the order of categories: Spring (two volumes), Summer, Autumn (two volumes), Winter, Separation, Journey, Jingi (gods of heaven and earth), Shakyamuni's teachings, Love (five volumes), Miscellanea (three volumes), Elegy, and Gaka (Celebration Poetry).

As mentioned in the preface, it contains poems composed by the poets, who had sided with the Southern Dynasty after the Genko era (1331-34) until the Kowa era (1381-84).
Poems by the former Emperor Gomurakami were selected most (100 poems), and the second most were by the Imperial Prince Muneyoshi (99 poems) (in order to make the former Emperor's poems selected most, but in reality, Prince Muneyoshi's other poems were selected a lot as 'Anonymous.')
Poems composed by great men who had lively roles and great energy in those troubled times were also selected: Chokeiin, Iekata KAZANIN, Morokata KAZANIN, Emperor Godaigo, Kinyasu TOIN, Imperial Prince Takayoshi, and Chikafusa KITABATAKE.

As it is called 'elegies of Yoshino court,' Shinyoshu contains many excellent acute poems which describe indignation at the fate which they could not resist in the considerable decline of the Southern Dynasty. The acute grief which lies in the simple and unaffected style of the Nijo group's poetry gives inner mystery to the poems, which cannot be seen in any of the Thirteen Imperial Anthologies of Japanese Poetry.

The following is a poem collected in the nineteenth volume of Elegies and composed by Shintaikenmonin (or Renshi ANO, the real mother of Emperor Gomurakami).

Yoshino was totally devastated, retaining nothing of its former appearance, but wild flowers still remained.'

In the spring of 2008, the anthology was republished in the Iwanami Bunko edition (annotated by Tadashi IWASA).

[Original Japanese]