Sunday, January 24, 2016

Carpe Diem #903 hot springs

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

January is running to its end and so is our prompt-list with classical and modern kigo for winter, running towards its end. Today I have a nice prompt for you based on Jane Reichhold's "A Dictionary of Haiku", in which she gathered modern kigo for all seasons. Today the modern kigo is hot springs and maybe you can remember that we have had this prompt earlier on CDHK, because of the haiku by Basho.
A hot spring is a spring produced by the emergence of geothermal heated groundwater that rises from the Earth's crust. There are geothermal hot springs in many locations all over the crust of the earth. While some of these springs contain water that is the correct temperature for bathing, others are too hot to do so and immersion can result in injury or death. Of course in this episode the good geothermal hot springs are our theme.

Yamanaka Hot Springs

In Basho's time there were several wonderful hot springs which were frequently visited by the Japanese people and by Basho himself. One of the hot springs Basho visited was in Yamanaka. In his wonderful haibun "Oku no Hosomichi" Basho says the following about this well known hot spring in Yamanaka: 
“I enjoyed a bath in the hot spring whose marvelous properties had a reputation of being second to none, except the hot spring of Ariake.

at Yamanaka
it’s not necessary to pluck chrysanthemums
hot spring fragrance

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)

The host of the inn was a young man named Kumenosuke. His father was a poet and there was an interesting story about him: one day, when Teishitsu (later a famous poet in Kyoto but a young man then) came to this place, he met this man and suffered a terrible humiliation because of his ignorance of poetry, and so upon his return to Kyoto, he became a student of Teitoku and never abandoned his studies in poetry till he had established himself as an independent poet. It was generally believed that Teishitsu gave instruction in poetry free of charge to anyone from this village throughout his life. It must be admitted, however, that this is already a story of long ago.”

And another nice haiku which he wrote as he says farewell to his host at Yamanka hot spring:

yuno nagori   kayoi wa hada no   samukara n

tonight my skin
will miss the hot spring
it seems colder

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)

Credits: Cougar Hot Springs

Let us now take a look at the examples which Jane gives for this modern kigo.

crystal waters
warmed with the scent
of earth

ancient earth
tiredness of my old body
in hot springs

from hot mineral baths
a bright lava flow

winter night
joining us in the bath
foggy stars

© Jane Reichhold

Secret Hot Spring

It wasn't easy to create haiku with this theme in it, but I had to try it. So first I found one in my archives and I wrote two new ones.

hot springs hidden
deep inside the holy mountain
giving new life

© Chèvrefeuille (April 2014)

hidden in the forest
I ran into a secret hot spring -
Ah! that sweet scent

falling in love
while enjoying the warm water -
secret hot spring 

© Chèvrefeuille

Well ... not bad, not bad at all ...

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until January 27th at noon (CET). I will (try to) publish our new episode, 
Kazahana (snowflakes), later on. For now ... have fun, be inspired and share your haiku with us all.

1 comment:

  1. All this talk about hot springs make me almost think about a soak in the apartment complex hot tub!. Like the feeling in your haiku. This will be my last contribution for a few weeks. I am having a knee replacement on Jan 25 so will be concentrating on rehab for 3 or 4 weeks.