Professor Kirby Record teaches as director of English for Academic Purposes at Akita International University(AIU)(国際教養大学) in Akita.
He also writes haiku. He is a fellow haiku poet of mine.
On October 11 and 12, we participated in AIU Festival and exhibited works of haiku posted on the website, giving haiku activities, such as some haiku quiz.
During the event, Professor Kirby Record joined our activities and contributed his book of poetry titled “A Welcome Coolness” to me.
I post poetry in his book, dividing them into some parts and giving them a Japanese translation, which isn’t sometimes literal. It’s me, Hidenori Hiruta who translated his poetry into Japanese.
The title of his book is derived from the following haiku:
a sudden breeze
in bright winter sunlight, leaves
a welcome coolness
冬光に 爽涼迎ふ 風そよぐ
toko ni soryo mukau kaze soyogu
春は花 Haru wa hana
夏ほととぎす Natsu hototogisu
秋は月 Aki wa tsuki
冬雪さえて Fuyu yuki saete
すずしかりけり Suzushi kari keri
This poetry is Waka (和歌literally “Japanese poem”) written by Dogen Zenji (道元禅師)(1200-1253), a Japanese Zen Buddhist teacher born in Kyoto, and the founder of the Soto school of Zen in Japan.
Professor Kirby Record translated it into English as follows:
“To everything there is a season.”
In Spring, cherry blossoms
In Summer, the cuckoo,
In Autumn, the moon,
In Winter, the snow,
Cold and clear.
Here I post haiku about autumn by Professor Kirby Record.
after rain the ferns in the window turn gold
雨の後 窓辺のシダや 金色に
ame no ato madobe no shida ya konjiki ni
sleeper car the clacking of rails october rain
寝台車 レールのカタットといふ音 十月の雨
shindaisha re-ru no katta to iu oto jugatsu no ame
scent of the rice harvest at dawn
刈り入れの 稲の匂ひや 暁に
kariire no ine no nioiya akatsuki ni
first october frost
just cold enough to feel good
with hands in pockets
十月の初霜 ほど良い寒さに ポケットに手を
jugatsu no hatsushimo hodo yoi samusa ni pokketo ni te wo
brighter than bright sunlight
all around it
イロハモミジ 日光よりも鮮明 周囲悉く
iohamomiji nikkou yorimo senmei shui kotogotoku
autumn moon glowing
nearly as bright as the sun
sinks into sunset
秋の月 夕日のごとく 鮮やかに
aki no tsuki yuhi no gotoku azayaka ni
the autumn colors
on those nearby mountains, blur
into pure whiteness
近山の 秋色かすみ 純白に
kinzan no shushoku kasumi junpaku ni
climbing the mountain
how quickly it is passing
山登る ４６度目の秋 速し
yama noboru yonjurokudome no aki hayashi
late october rain
on rice fields’ empty stubble:
１０月の晩雨 稲田の刈り株 柿オレンジ色
jugatsu no ban u inada no karikabu kaki orenji iro
Next I post some haiku of mine and some photos of autumn.
Autumn high skies
Mt. Taihei coloring
天高く 紫深し 太平山
ten takaku murasaki fukashi taiheizan
leaves coloring ―
晩秋や 山 雪帽子 紅葉に
banshu ya yama yukiboshi momiji ba ni
brightening the garden ―
映える庭 イロハモミジの 武家屋敷
haeru niwa irohamomiji no bukeyashiki
The autumn colors ―
秋色や イロハモミジに イチョウの木
shushoku ya irohamomiji ni icho no ki
into the water ―
秋更ける 田沢の湖に 散る落葉
aki fukeru Tazawa no umi ni chiru ochiba
sees fallen leaves ―
how many years ?
辰子姫 落葉見しより 幾年ぞ
Tatsukohime ochiba mishi yori ikutose zo
Last of all, I post my favorite haiku of Basho’s, translated into English by Donald Keene.
Along this road
There are no travellers ―
Nightfall in autumn
kono michi ya yuku hito nashi ni aki no kure
Autumn has deepened
I wonder what the man next door
Does for a living ?
aki fukaki tonari wa nani wo suru hito zo
― Hidenori Hiruta