Sunday, September 22, 2013

Carpe Diem #304, Yanagi Chiru (Willow leaves fall)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

As you know we are busy with classical Japanese kigo or seasonwords for late-autumn. The Willow is one of the trees that loose their leaves in late autumn. It loses it's leaves in late november, early december and as the Willow leaves fall winter is near and the departure of autumn is almost there. It's the last period before the wintersolstice in which the day is at his shortest and the night the longest. The wintersolstice means that the days will become longer and that the light will return. The returning of the light we celebrate with Christmas when we also celebrate the birth of Jesus, the Light of the World.
When there wasn't such thing as celebrating Christmas the heathens celebrate already the returning of the light with the wintersolstice, so our Christmas has it's roots in the culture of heathens.In paganism and Wiccan traditions the winterslstice is one of the biggest events, next to the summersolstice.

Credits: Willow in autumn

I found a wonderful haiku by Buson, about the fallen leaves of the Willow ...

yanagi chiri shimizu kare ishi tokoro dokoro.

fallen willow leaves --
the clear stream gone dry,
stones here and there

(c) Buson

And what do you think about this haiku by Basho, "my master" which he wrote as a payment for his stay at a temple during his "Narrow Road to the Deep North":

niwa hou te   ide baya tera ni   chiru yanagi

to sweep the garden
before I leave
falling willow leaves

(c) Basho

And I found a nice haiku written by a modern haiku poetess named Anna Holley (Source: AHA-Poetry):

autumn passes
willow leaves fall
onto a moored boat

(c) Anna Holley

All wonderful haiku on Yanagi Chiru (Willow leaves fall) another nice classical Japanese kigo. So this is a challenge, but also a joy to write a haiku on "Willow leaves fall".

Credits: Willow in autumn (2)

My attempt to write a haiku on Willow leaves fall:

autumn departs
in deep silence willow leaves fall -
tears on this grave

tears on this grave
as the willow is green again
another year has gone

another year has gone
here again at this graveyard
willow leaves fall

Wow! What a wonderful set of haiku ... I was thinking about my brother who died in autumn 1995 as I wrote these haiku and I think they are doing justice to the love I have for my brother.

This prompt will stay on 'till September 24th 11.59 AM (CET) and I will post our next episode, Warazuka (straw bundles), later on today around 7.00 PM (CET). !! Willow leaves fall is open for your submissions at 7.00 PM (CET) !!


  1. Wonderful... and so much tears in this prompt. Feels early though.. I want to hold on to the early autumn...

  2. it is a beautiful set
    the tears may lessen and hopefully be replaced with tears of remembrance

  3. A beautiful set, from the heart. Lovely! :-)

  4. Your first verse is wonderfully written - and felt. I went a bit off the rail...having just seen the word willow.. I missed the' leaves falling' part.

  5. Excellent post and love your cascading haiku in memory of your brother ~ reminds me of my own losses ~ part of life that hurts deeply ~ Happy Week to YOU ~ carol, xo

    ps. ~ hope my new system of posting 3 Carpe Diem Haiku works ~

  6. I didn't even know willow leaves fell off the tree...I know that sounds strange. Never have been around a weeping willow in the fall apparently. So this prompt had me really staring at images. How could I have missed knowing that. Thank you for bringing this knowledge to my awareness. I, too, was very touched by your cascade of tears...weeping.

  7. Even the willow's tears shall not make life grow from the grave I'm afraid.
    Wonderful cascade Kristjaan and thank you for sharing the other masters' haiku too.

    summer birds have flown

  8. each time you write of your brother, I think of my sister - the weeping willow is a perfect depiction of tempered grief...