kokinshu

The flowers withered,
Their color faded away
While meaninglessly
I spent my days in the world
And the long rains were falling.

This night of no moon
There is no way to meet him.
I rise in longing –
My breast pounds, a leaping flame,
My heart is consumed in fire.

Ono no Komachi

hojoki

The flow of the river is ceaseless and its water is
never the same. The bubbles that float in the pools,
now vanishing, now forming, are not of long duration:
so in the world are man and his dwellings…
People die in the morning, they are born in the
evening, like foam on the water.

Kamo no Chomei

futility

How can we escape from you, life, except through death?
Our sorrows are endless. Endure? Escape? Neither is easy.
Yes, the beauty of nature is sweet—the earth,
sea, stars, the orbit of the moon and sun.
But all else is fear and pain.
One day a bit of luck
and then we wait for inexorable Nemesis.

Aisopos