Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,
It's my pleasure to bring a new episode of our Haiku Kai month May in which we are on the trail with Basho. This month we are following Basho in his footsteps by looking at several haiku he wrote on his journeys. It's a real adventure ... as is life every day again, not only an adventure, but also a challenge. We all have goals to reach and everyone of us is doing that in his/her own way.
For me haiku is one of the goals I am reaching for ... to write the perfect haiku .... to become as good as Basho was, maybe even better. And of course there is that other goal in my life being an oncology nurse who is caring for his patients out of unconditional love ... and than there is me being a father and grandfather of a wonderful caring family .... I am truly blessed ...
Today the haiku which I love to bring up is not a very well known haiku, but it's a beauty. This haiku comes from the haibun Kashima Travelogue in which he describes a journey to the "Kashima Shrine" about fifty miles east of Edo. He travels with a friend and visits his (Basho's) Zen master Butcho. In this travelogue there are mostly haiku composed by Basho's disciples, but our haiku of today is an exception and is written by the master, Basho, himself.
|Credits: Kashima Shrine|
This time I have chosen for another translator, Sam Hamill, and here is his translation:
koke uzumu tsuta no utsutsu no nebutsu kana
buried in moss
and ivy leaves, but from within
the tomb, a faint prayer
© Basho (Tr. Sam Hamill)
A very strong emotional and spiritual feeling gets me. Basho visits his Zen master Butcho who has retired to the Kashima Shrine ... this haiku is full of sentiment and love for his master entwined with the deep religious Zen Buddhist experience Basho has right at that moment as he sees his Zen master again. Isn't it a wonderful haiku?
How can I write a haiku which is close to the spirituality of Basho's ... I just have to try ... I hope I can come up with something.
buried in moss
hidden under colorful leaves
What do you think? Let me know ....
This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until May 8th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our next episode, buying a cookie, later on.