World Haiku Series 2019 (213) Renga (連歌) by Mitsunari Ganzicy, Mitsunari Masyo and Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu)

The World Haiku Series 2019 ends with today’s updating. 

We are most grateful to all the authors for having shared their fine works of haiku with our haiku friends in the world.

Thanks a million again.


World Haiku Series 2019 (213)

Renga (連歌) by Mitsunari Ganzicy, Mitsunari Masyo and Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu)


On July 6, 2020, Mitsunari Ganzicy in Russia kindly and delightedly sent his fine works of sumi-e and renga (連歌) for the World Haiku Series 2019.


Here is Mitsunari Ganzicy’s comment.


The international haiku project World Haiku Series 2019, which was dedicated to the 330th anniversary of Matsuo Basho’s visit to Kisakata, has become a real source of inspiration for us.

Understanding our desperate courage in trying to translate the renga “familiar bay …” into Japanese, we hope that you will understand our sincere and careful attitude to the Japanese poetic tradition and respect for the work of the great ancient poets Basho and Saigyo (西行).

Allow me to send a digital scroll with sumi-e and renga (連歌) “familiar bay …” with comments on the English translation as a friendly gift.


“familiar bay…”



  1. Hokku


familiar bay

blooming cherry wave

whiten here and there


Mitsunari Masyo


Comment. The initial three-part cycle, according to tradition, belongs to the category of “landscape stanzas” “ba no ku”. Mitsunari Masyo starting the rank line “familiar bay …” builds an invisible bridge between the shores of two bays – one shore where Basho wandered, and the second shore is the one along which the authors of the presented cycle traveled at different times, sometimes it was the Gulf of Finland, sometimes Tokyo Bay, and sometimes Taganrog Bay. “The waves of blooming cherries waves whiten here and there” is a direct reference to the poems of yet another poet, with whose name Basho’s journey to Kisakata is related, this is Saigyou wrote:

“On Kisakata / a wave flooded cherries / and over the flowers / along the light, water surface, / fishing boats are sailing” (Saigyou, per. Markova V.N.). After all, Basho himself traveled there, where other poets had visited and sang in his poems the beauty of remarkable places. In hokku, the initial cycle time is determined (the seasonal word “blooming cherries” is spring).


  1. Wakiku


unfading nights

and endless days


Mitsunari Ganzicy


Comment. The second stanza saves the time of year given to the “hockey”. (The seasonal word “unfading nights” refers to the category of spring nights – at the end of May the time for white nights begins on the shores of the Gulf of Finland and Lake Ladoga. This stanza is also “landscape”, but also has some poetic connection with one of the most famous descriptions of St. Petersburg White Nights A.S. Pushkin (russian poet, 1799-1837): “And not letting the darkness of night / To the golden skies, / One dawn to change another / giving the night half an hour.”


  1. Shoura-no ikkume


it’s raining!

acacia’s color dry

became shores


Mitsunari Masyo


Comment. The third (or first reverse) stanza continues the landscape theme.

The seasonal word “faded acacia” indicates that the action takes place in the summer. In his journey to Kisakata, Basho also devoted several lines to acacias: “Kisakata/Si Shi in the rain/acacia-nemu”.


  1. Shoura-no Nikume


reflected in puddles

roofs of houses and birds


Mitsunari Ganzicy


Comment. In the fourth (or second revolving) stanza, the theme of summer is further developed, approaching autumn, and the landscape is detailed.


  1. Shoura-no sankume



invisible dew

cicadas drink


Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu)


Comment. The fifth (or third reverse) stanza is somewhat more complex in its associative context, Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu) uses images of “dew” and “cicada”, which in turn are images of unrequited love, separation and the coming autumn.


  1. Shoura-no yonkume


seeking a long … waiting 

not hearing your sing


Mitsunari Masyo


Comment. In the sixth (fourth reverse) stanza, the sensual theme continues to be the main one. The authors have not written together for a long time – therefore, they used the lines of their famous Mitsunari Masyo’s poem about the cricket, whose songs used to be heard everywhere in the meadows and are now inaudible, written in 2014, the song is included in a series of poems dedicated to the poet Saigyo.


  1. Nagori-no omote-no ikkume


the moon rises 

and seven seas of sorrow 

shed light


Mitsunari Masyo


Comment. In the seventh stanza (or the first stanza of the second obverse), the image

The image of the moon is introduced. And again, Mitsunari Masho returns to the cycle – the dedication of Saigyo, written in 2014.


  1. Nagori-no omote, nikume


and in each-each drop 

farewell light doesn’t go out


Mitsunari Ganzicy


Comment. In the eighth stanza (or in the second stanza of the second obverse), the connection between the lines is expressed by the word “light” and at the same time Mitsunari Ganzicy answers with lines that are also included in the cycle of consecutive verses to the poet Saigyo, the message is written in response to these lines to the author of the sixth and seventh stanzas that they heard and understood him. The stanza does not correlate with a particular season.


  1. Nagori-no omote, sankume


in purple shades

faraway across seas 

you hide tears


Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu)


Comment. The connection between the seventh and ninth (or third stanza of the second obverse) is not so easy to detect, it is a very complex chain of associative images. But the connection is obvious, because the lines “beyond the seas” are the image of distant irrevocable wanderings, to which the lyrical hero, about whom Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu) writes, is the same wandering poet like Basho and Saigyo. The stanza belongs to the category of “about the human,” the season is not indicated.


  1. Nagori-no omote, yonkume


autumn smokiness

not eternal between us


Mitsunari Ganzicy


Comment. The ninth, the stanza introduces the person and the tenth stanza (or the fourth stanza of the second front side), taking this image as a basis, expands it, supplementing it with new details and at the same time softens a certain hidden tragedy that sounds in the ninth stanza. This stanza also contains a reference to the famous Saigyo tanka: “On the seashore/Where saltworks smoke/Darkened the distance/Like grappling in a fight/Smoke with spring fog”. The season is also determined – autumn (the seasonal word is “autumn fog”). Thus, the cycle of the seasons closes: the cycle began with “spring”, after “summer” it was “autumn”, then “winter” and again “spring”.


  1. Nagori-no ura, ikkume


pines on the rocks … 

just whisper to me – alive 

in mountain hut poet 


Mitsunari Masyo


Comment. In the eleventh stanza (the first stanza of the second flip side), Mitsunari Masyo again returns to the tanka, written on January 23, 2010, the poet is the hero of the three-part. Mitsunari Masyo writes that this stanza is forever dedicated to the poet Saigyo, but initially the tanka was written as a gift to a poet friend for his birthday. No season.


  1. Nagori-no ura, ageku


snow flakes falling 

and forthwith thaw in water


Mitsunari Ganzicy


Comment. The last, twelfth, stanza of the cycle (the second stanza on the back of the second sheet) again, for the third time in the entire cycle, softens and as if spiritualizes the sadness that permeates the previous stanzas, raising it to light sadness about the fleeting passage of time, which is inexorable to all living, but still it makes it possible to have time to feel, experience and share your thoughts and feelings that are sure to someday find a response and in someone else’s heart. Yes, the words of the initial song are not used here, but the image of snowflakes melting on the waves involuntarily returns us to the image of the familiar bay. In this case, the cycle ends on a quiet light note of spring snowfall.




The cycle “familiar bay …” was written in the winter of 2019 in connection with participation in an international project World Haiku Series 2019 dedicated to the 330th anniversary of Matsuo Basho’s visit to Kisakata in Akita Prefecture (Japan).

The authors of the cycle were Mitsunari Masyo, Mitsunari Ganzicy and Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu). It is known that the cycle was created by them from the ninth to the twelfth month of 2019. This project is visualized in two types of scroll with sumi-e and renga lines translated into English (fragments of the picture) and Japanese (whole scroll).

The initial stanza of the cycle (“hokku”) “familiar bay …” was composed by Mitsunari Masyo on November 19, 2009 and is a direct reference to the original song “in a distant land / where the pine trees rustle with the wind / is still awake / the bay is familiar – the waves / bloom armfuls in the distance … ” and these images also complement the poetic picture, give it multidimensionality, stretching through the time and space the red thread of the connection of poems and poets.

Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu)

Mitsunari Masyo

and myself personally, impressed by the story of Ishida Mitsunari’s gift (石田三成の贈り物), wrote a haiku


summer night

fireflies fireflies

even in the washbasin


Best wishes,

Mitsunari Ganzicy



3 thoughts on “World Haiku Series 2019 (213) Renga (連歌) by Mitsunari Ganzicy, Mitsunari Masyo and Mitsunari Ae-no ason (Akamatsu)

  1. Dear Hiruta san,

    Deep gratitude to you for your labour of love for haiku and introducing so many haijin from all over the world to us. 🙏💐🙏
    Enjoyed all your shares. Best wishes to all poets.
    Warm regards,

  2. Thank you for closing the World Haiku Series 2019 with this beautiful renga and detailed commentary. The series stands as a true labour of love and the love of haiku we all share. It’s a series I will always treasure and it’s been a delight to meet so many haijin from around the world. Thank you again with warm greetings from Scotland, Xenia.

  3. Dear haiku poets, or haijin, thank you very much for having sent nice haiku for the World Haiku Series 2019.
    It is one of the greatest pleasures in life to meet haiku lovers on the website, sharing fine works of haiku with each other.
    Thanks a million again to each haijin for having given such a good time, a rich source of inspiration, and a big delight. Hidenori Hiruta

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