Thursday, December 11, 2014

Carpe Diem "Little Creatures" #14, Basho's " spring rain "

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

It's time for a new episode of our bi-weekly feature "Little Creatures". This week I love to challenge you all to write an all new haiku in the classical way (5-7-5; cutting-word; seasonword; deeper meaning; inter-changeable first and third line) inspired on a haiku written by Matsuo Basho about a Hornet's nest (or Wasps' nest). A Hornet or Wasp are "little creatures" not always nice to us, but they are beautiful creatures.

Here is the haiku by Basho which is your source of inspiration for this episode:

suzumebachino su kara yane doro darake no mizutamari wo kaishi te haru no ame wo shizuku

pring rain,
leaking through the roof,
dripping from the wasps' nest.

© Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)

Credits: (Partial) woodblock print Wasps

It's not a wellknown haiku by Basho and I am not that fond on this haiku by Basho. To me it looks somewhat amateuristic, but maybe that's to blame the translator of this haiku. I have tried to translate it myself, but I couldn't really find a smoother way for this haiku, but I love to share (of course) my translation:

from the hornet's nest
drips the spring rain
through the leaking roof

© Chèvrefeuille

Maybe not the best translation too, but it reads (in my opinion) somewhat smoother, but that's just my idea/feeling. And I have written another version in which I have tried to catch the same feeling but with a twist:

from the old Hornet's nest
drips the spring rain through the leaking roof -
sound of a tap-dancer

© Chèvrefeuille

By the way it wasn't easy to write this new haiku because of the rules I gave I too had to use the 5-7-5 syllables count. To help me get the right syllables count I have used a syllables-counter on the Internet. The English syllables rules are very different with the ones we use here in Dutch.

Well ... I hope you all did like this "Little Creatures" episode and I hope it will inspire you to write/compose an all new haiku following the classical rules as mentioned above.
This episode of "Little Creatures" is open for your submissions at noon (CET) and will remain open until next Thursday at noon (CET).


  1. This was a very interesting post - fascinating work.

  2. Great exercise to write about the less-than-pleasant creatures :)

  3. Oh yes.. why not write about those little ones as well.. they have a tendency to die in my beer though

  4. Always well done haiku, tanka and posts ~ Holidays and life is slowing me down as to how much I can get done ~

    Happy Day to you.

    artmusedog and carol