Sunday, June 26, 2016

Carpe Diem #985 Austria

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

It's a wonderful month, travelling through the European Union is awesome and today we will visit one of the European countries which I visited myself once long time ago. Today we will visit Austria. Austria became a member of the European Union (EU) in 1995. Let me tell you a little bit about the history of Austria.

The origins of modern-day Austria date back to the time of the Habsburg dynasty when the vast majority of the country was a part of the Holy Roman Empire. From the time of the Reformation, many Northern German princes, resenting the authority of the Emperor, used Protestantism as a flag of rebellion. The Thirty Years War, the influence of the Kingdom of Sweden and Kingdom of France, the rise of the Kingdom of Prussia, and the Napoleonic invasions all weakened the power of the Emperor in the North of Germany, but in the South, and in non-German areas of the Empire, the Emperor and Catholicism maintained control. During the 17th and 18th centuries, Austria was able to retain its position as one of the great powers of Europe and, in response to the coronation of Napoleon as the Emperor of the French, the Austrian Empire was officially proclaimed in 1804. Following Napoleon's defeat, Prussia emerged as Austria's chief competitor for rule of a larger Germany. Austria's defeat by Prussia at the Battle of Königgrätz, during the Austro-Prussian War of 1866, cleared the way for Prussia to assert control over the rest of Germany. In 1867, the empire was reformed into Austria-Hungary. After the defeat of France in the 1870 Franco-Prussian War, Austria was left out of the formation of a new German Empire, although in the following decades its politics, and its foreign policy, increasingly converged with those of the Prussian-led Empire. During the 1914 July Crisis that followed the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, Germany guided Austria in issuing the ultimatum to Serbia that led to the declaration of World War I. 
Flag of Austria
After the collapse of the Habsburg (Austro-Hungarian) Empire in 1918 at the end of World War I, Austria adopted and used the name the Republic of German-Austria (Deutschösterreich, later Österreich) in an attempt for union with Germany, but was forbidden due to the Treaty of Saint-Germain-en-Laye (1919). The First Austrian Republic was established in 1919. In the 1938 Anschluss, Austria was occupied and annexed by Nazi Germany. This lasted until the end of World War II in 1945, after which Germany was occupied by the Allies and Austria's former democratic constitution was restored. In 1955, the Austrian State Treaty re-established Austria as a sovereign state, ending the occupation. In the same year, the Austrian Parliament created the Declaration of Neutrality which declared that the Second Austrian Republic would become permanently neutral.
I remember that I visited Austria as a young guy of 18 years, it was an educational tour to learn German. I was housed in the home of an Austrian family, the best way to learn German. I was overwhelmed by the beauty of the Austrian nature. I had never seen mountains in reality, I only knew mountains from pictures. It was amazing ...

As a haiku poet nature is one of the main themes, so it must be easy to create haiku about the Austrian nature ... the clean mountain air, the mountains, the mountain flora and fauna ... awesome. Let us take a look at the beauty of the Alps.

The Alps
clear blue sky
embraces the mountains
cry of an eagle

© Chèvrefeuille

sound of water
babbling mountain stream

deepens the silence

© Chèvrefeuille

Austrian National Park (Hohe Tauern National Park)

In the heart of the Austrian Alps, Hohe Tauern National Park provides endangered animal and plant species with a protected habitat. 1800 km² in area, Hohe Tauern National Park is actually the second largest in Europe. Here you can experience Mother Nature at her most beautiful: Austria’s highest peaks and biggest glaciers, meadows strewn with colorful alpine flowers, imposing crags and refreshing waterfalls. A centuries-old natural and cultural landscape, formed by the Ice Ages and the forces of the seasons, is just waiting to be discovered.
Mother Nature
dances in her Paradise
the sound of water
© Chèvrefeuille
As I was doing my research for this episode I ran into a wonderful, spiritual and mysterious almost mystical photo of the Alps. I just had to use it in this post today ... look for yourself.
Mystical Alps
serene beauty
the gods cherish Mother Nature
blessing her

© Chèvrefeuille
cloud cover breaks open
sun rays finding their way to the mountains
like blessing hands
© Chèvrefeuille
It wasn't easy to find haiku poets from Austria, but I finally found a few examples of haiku from Austria.
Eine Wasserrose,
Die aus der Tiefe auftaucht.
Kräuselt sich das Wasser.
A water lily
Emerging from the depth
Ripples of water
© Paul Ernst (1898) (one of the first haiku written in Austria)
And I found a few haiku by Dietmar Tauchner, a modern Austrian haiku poet, who has won several prizes and is also a member of the American Haiku Society. To read more haiku by Dietmar Tauchner please visit his website Bregengemme. (The German translations are my own)
Autumn Colors
Herbst Einbruch der Nacht
Die Eiche ist ein wieder
mit seinem Schatten
autumn nightfall
the oak is one again
with its shadow
Wiese Safran
die rohen Schreie von Staren
beziehen sich auf mich
meadow saffron
the raw cries of starlings
refer to me
© Dietmar Tauchner
Austria ... a wonderful country ...

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until July 1st at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, the last CD-Special by Joyce Lorenson, later on.


1 comment:

  1. Carpe Diem European Ginko # 985 Austria:

    Austrian Alps
    ibex grazing
    on grassy mountain slopes