Since the April flowers have come and gone, the May flowers have been coming out and blooming one after another here in Akita. The other day Thorfinn Tait from the UK happened to see some Enkianthus flowers, called 満天星 (dodantsutsuji) in Japanese. He took a picture of the flower, deeply moved by its beauty. … Continue reading Basho’s cherry blossoms
In May, I took a stroll in the woods in Akita. There I heard bush warblers singing in fresh green and I saw skunk cabbages growing in the marsh. I felt as if I were in a natural temple, suddenly created in the woods, because it seemed as if there were bush … Continue reading Basho’s bush warbler
I'm sure all our readers are familiar with haiku, but I wonder how many people know about senryu and tanka. To get a general idea, I have created this poll. Please tick all the forms you're familiar with and cast your vote. We will hopefully be using this feature again at a later date.
By ALEXANDER DOLIN Japanese tanka and haiku are already well known all over the world and don’t need any special recommendations. Thousands of Europeans and Americans have joined the club of haiku lovers, hundreds tried to compose tanka in their native language. Numerous collections of poetic translations from the old and new Japanese classics … Continue reading The Rediscovery of Japanese Poetry
In 1689, 320 years ago, Matsuo Basho visited Kisakata, Akita on the narrow road to Oku. He composed his haiku: 象潟や雨に西施がねぶの花 Kisakata ya ame ni Seishi ga nebu no hana Donald Keene translated this haiku into English, Kisakata― Seishi sleeping in the rain, Wet mimosa blossoms. In 2004 I … Continue reading Basho’s dream