Who is Saigyo

Saigyō Hōshi (西行 法師, 1118 – March 23, 1190) was a famous Japanese poet of the late Heian and early Kamakura period.

Biography Born Satō Norikiyo (佐藤 義清) in Kyoto to a noble family, he lived during the traumatic transition of power between the old court nobles and the new samurai warriors. After the start of the Age of Mappō (1052), Buddhism was considered to be in decline and no longer as effective a means of salvation. These cultural shifts during his lifetime led to a sense of melancholy in his poetry. As a youth, he worked as a guard to retired Emperor Toba, but in 1140 at age 22, for reasons now unknown, he quit worldly life to become a monk, taking the religious name En'i (円位). He later took the pen name, "Saigyō" meaning...
Read Full Biography

Saigyo Poems

  • Having Seen Them Long
    Having seen them long,
    I hold the flowers so dear
    That when they scatter
    I find it all the more sad ...
  • How Wonderful
    How wonderful, that
    Her heart
    Should show me kindness;
    And of all the numberless folk, ...
  • Thought I Was Free
    Thought I was free
    of passion, so this melancholy
    comes as surprise:
    a woodcock shoots up from the marsh ...
  • Unbroken Gloom.
    times when unbroken
    gloom is over all our world
    over which still
    sits the ever brilliant moon ...
  • Limitations Gone
    limitations gone
    since my mind fixed on the moon
    clarity and serenity
    make something for which ...
Read All Poems

Top 10 most used topics by Saigyo

Moon 5 Wind 3 Grief 2 Sad 2 Autumn 2 Heart 2 Mountain 2 Hold 1 Cloud 1 Wild 1

Saigyo Quotes

Read All Quotes

Comments about Saigyo

  • Romanhistory1: the punic port of carthage, 2300 years later.
  • Zenwisdomcoach: beyond this life and this world i'll have it til my heart's content:the bright moon that passed over.the horizon before i had my fill―saigyō
  • Deepmind: humans can learn to avoid unsafe situations by imagining hypothetical situations. now ai systems can do the same - even in complex 3d environments, and even when the limits of safe behaviour must be learned from human feedback! read more:
  • Ak92501: patches are all you need? abs:
  • Srush_nlp: proof-of-concept: (mini)torch in the browser (
Read All Comments

Write your comment about Saigyo

Poem of the day

Matthew Prior Poem
Songs Set To Music: 16. Set By Mr. Smith
 by Matthew Prior

Accept, my Love, as true a heart
As ever lover gave;
'Tis free (it vows) from my art,
And proud to be your slave.

Then take it kindly, as 'twas meant,
And let the giver live,
Who with it would the world have sent

Read complete poem

Popular Poets