Saturday, November 1, 2014

Carpe Diem #596, Miscanthus (or Susuki)

!! This episode is published earlier than I normally do, because I am in the nightshift !!

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Today we are going on with the exploration of the Seven Sacred Autumn Flowers and today that's the Miscanthus a species of flowering grass, native to eastern Asia throughout most of China, Japan, Taiwan and Korea. It is an herbaceous perennial grass, growing to 0.8–2 m (3–7 ft) tall, rarely 4 m (13 ft), forming dense clumps from an underground rhizome. The leaves are 18–75 cm (7–30 in) tall and 0.3–2 cm broad. The flowers are purplish, held above the foliage. This plant is the preferred structure for the nesting of some species of paper wasps, such as Ropalidia fasciata.

Credits: Miscanthus Sinensis in Autumn

As I look at the Miscanthus it looks similar with pampasgrass, but it's more fragile. And it's one of the beloved Autumn flowers of the Japanese people.

I have sought for haiku about Miscanthus, but found only haiku written about Miscanthus by Basho. Of course I haven't sought every haiku-poet, but the "big-five" for sure. So here are the haiku by Basho which I have found:

inazuma ya  kao no tokoro ga  susuki no ho

through the face,
miscanthus plumes

shiorashiki  na ya komatsu fuku  hagi susuki

a lovely name—
Little Pine, where the wind wafts
over bush clover and miscanthus

yuki chiru ya  hoya no susuki no  karinokoshi
snow falling—
miscanthus for the shrine hut
still uncut

Credits: Miscanthus or Susuki

tomokakumo  narade ya yuki no  kareobana

still alive—snow on
withered miscanthus

bashō uete mazu nikumu ogi no  futaba kana
by my new banana plant
the first sign of something I loathe—
a miscanthus bud

All wonderful haiku written by Basho ... to come near to the beauty of these Miscanthus-haiku will not be easy, but I have to try of course.

Here is my attempt to write a haiku inspired on Miscanthus:

swaying in the breeze
like waves in the ocean
Miscanthus leaves

© Chèvrefeuille

This above haiku is a re-written one which I have earlier posted in a post about pampasgrass and in this version it looks even greater ... according to the above photo Miscanthus looks like the ocean. Well .... I hope you are inspired too.This episode is open for your submissions tonight at 7.00 PM (CET) and will remain open until November 4th at noon (CET). I will (try to) post our next episode, Kudzu, later on today.


  1. Hello Chevrefeuille --

    What a great prompt! This one speaks to me more than the bush clover -- and the haiku here are wonderful. I found another haiku about miscanthus but it doesn't hold a candle to that first haiku by Bashō:

    Yamazaki Sōkan (1458-1546):

    leave it to the wind
    dry miscanthus

  2. Am enjoying your prompts. Found your site mid October. Had not written but a handful of haiku over the past two years -- now have close to 100 just for October. Thanks for the nudge.