Friday, November 30, 2012

Carpe Diem #58, Indian Summer (koharu)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Today our third month of Carpe Diem's daily haiku meme is starting with a new series of daily prompts and with a new logo of course. I hope you like this new logo I have made with a picture of 'Dutch Skies'.
This month I have chosen for the classical Japanese kigo or seasonwords as they were used in Classic Japan by our fellow haijin in that time. Kigo were words which referred to the season e.g. tulips are a kigo for Spring and frost for Winter. These Kigo or Seasonwords are still in use.
In this month we will have an every day prompt for Winter. I have divided this month in three parts, 1) early winter; 2) mid winter and 3) late winter. So we start today with 'early winter' kigo. Today our prompt is Indian Summer. The Specials for this month are haiku written by Buson (1716-1783) he's one of the four greatest haiku-masters next to Basho, Issa and Shiki (who's by the way our Special haiku-master for January).
Before I start with our new prompt I love to share a haiku by Buson:

winter rain on moss
soundlessly recalls those
happy bygone days

Isn't it a wonderful haiku? By the way 'winter rain' is a kigo for early winter.

OK ... let's go composing our first haiku for this new month of daily Carpe Diem pleasure (smiles).

I love to share some interesting info on Indian Summer (in my country, The Netherlands, it's known as 'oude wijven zomer' or in English 'Old Wives Summer').

This is typical for Indian Summer
An Indian summer is a heat wave that occurs in the autumn. It refers to a period of considerably above-normal temperatures, accompanied by dry and hazy conditions, usually after there has been a killing frost. Depending on latitude and elevation, it can occur in the Northern Hemisphere between late September and mid November.
The expression 'Indian summer' has been used for more than two centuries. The earliest known use was by French-American writer John Hector St. John de Crevecoeur in rural New York in 1778: "Then a severe frost succeeds which prepares it to receive the voluminous coat of snow which is soon to follow; though it is often preceded by a short interval of smoke and mildness, called the Indian Summer."
In British English St. Martin's Summer was the most widely used term until the American phrase became better known in the 20th century. In the United Kingdom, the term Indian summer is used loosely for a period of unseasonable warmth and sunshine in late September, October, or November. In former times in English-speaking regions of Europe, 'Indian summer' was called Saint Martin's Summer, referring to St. Martin's day, November 11. An alternative was Saint Luke's summer. Another alternative was "All-hallows summer", as All Hallows' is November 1. In the United Kingdom Indian summer is often used to describe warm weather that comes late in the year after unusually cool summer months.In the Netherlands it is sometimes called "oudewijvenzomer" or "sint-michielszomer" ("St. Michael's Summer"), although the term "nazomer" ("late summer") is used more often. 

OK ... now we know something more about 'Indian Summer' ... time to start writing haiku:

after a warm day 
a thin layer of fresh fallen snow
covers the garden

This prompt will stay on 'till December 2nd 11.59 AM (CET) and I will publish our new prompt 'withering wind' later on today around 10.00 PM (CET).

Have fun, be inspired and creative. Share your creativity with Carpe Diem's daily haiku meme.


  1. snow after the warm day .. hmm I guess I will like that :D

    good prompt idea !

  2. I think New England skipped Indian Summer this year....Those warm days are such a mood elevator....

  3. I love indian summers except when accompanied by California Santa Ana winds. Nice prompt.

  4. Nice picture! I've just posted my "Indian Summer".

  5. Indian summer is a very good Haiku topic. I wonder what's keeping people to post their haiku?!

    1. I think that the others have some difficulties to relate with this Classical Japanese kigo. To you and me they're more familiar I think. Thanks Lothar for your comment. Have a good weekend.

  6. Hi Kristjaan, it's been Indian Summer here, too, and flowers are blooming! Your haiku is lovely, and I like the one by Buson as well. Looking forward to December haiku on Carpe Diem! I'll participate as much as I can. Greetings from NY :)

    1. I am glad to see you here again Loredana. This December month will be wonderful and IN hope to read wonderfully composed haiku with our classical Japanese kigo.

  7. A good prompt...took time for words to surface, but I did get it posted on time.