Karuta (Japanese poetry card game)

At a future in-person Festival, join the San Francisco Karuta Kai and Satsuki-kai Hyakunin Isshu Club to play, Hyakunin Isshu, or “One Hundred Poems by One Hundred Poets.” One hundred poems were selected by Fujiwara-no-Teika in the 13th century and incorporated into a card game in the 16th century. The game consists of a reader reciting the first three lines of a poem and the players competing to see who can grab the corresponding card the fastest. Anyone who can read hiragana can join the game.

Everyone can play bosan mekuri, which uses poem cards with pictures.

The groups typically meet for games once a month in Japantown.

There is no scheduled programming for Karuta in the 2021 Festival, but we hope to bring this card game activity back in a future in-person Festival.

Karuta card game
Karuta card game