Thursday, July 23, 2015

Carpe Diem #781 Ichigo (Strawberry)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

My dad has had a major heart attack yesterday and he is in the hospital at the ICU. His bloodlevels were very high according to the Cardiologist and we hope he will survive this major heart attack. Today, around noon (CET), my dad was replaced to the Cardiac unit. He is ok and will stay in the hospital until next Monday. Heart-revalidation started today. I am glad he has survived this major heart attack. Thank you all for your love and prayers. I am grateful for all of your support.

Today our prompt is Ichigo or Strawberry another beautiful classical Japanese kigo for summer. I remember that I had a strawberry prompt last year (June 2014). In that month we had all modern kigo based on Jane Reichhold's "A Dictionary of Haiku", so this new episode (more than a year later) we can see as a "reprise-prompt".

A little bit history can be on its place here. So I have searched they Internet and ran into the following piece of history:

Strawberries have been introduced to Japan by the Dutch merchants during the Edo period, at that time they were called "Holland Strawberries" (oranda ichigo). The season started in early summer, so they became a kigo of that period. Later they were grown in large hothouses, along many coastal areas in Japan. Now the strawberry season starts before the New Year, since they are used as a decoration for the whipped cream Christmas Cake. They are also used as Birthday Cake decorations. I tried to grow them in the garden, but the strong weeds are no match for these delicate plants, you need a hothouse indeed. (Source: World Kigo Base)

hi no yoo ni ichigo narabete tabe-ni-keri

like flames
I arrange the strawberries
and eat them . . .

© Gotoo Takashi (1968 - )

Strawberries ... I like them very much. In my country (The Netherlands) they are called "zomerkoninkjes" or in English "summer kings/queens". It's that name that inspired me to write the next haiku (from my archives):

little red queens
tasteful and attractive
strawberry field

© Chèvrefeuille

And to conclude this episode I love to reproduce the haiku by Jane Reichhold which I used in the above mentioned episode of CDHK.

strawberries tasting
open fields
on the tip of his tongue
a strawberry

our tongues
strawberries tasting
each other

© Jane Reichhold

Aren't they wonderful? Strawberries have a nice sensual and erotic meaning for a lot of us. These haiku by Jane are responding on that feeling.

I hope you liked this episode and I hope it will inspire you to write an all new haiku or tanka.

This episode is open for your submissions tonight at 7.00 PM (CET) and it will remain open until July 26th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, Suzuran (Lilly of the Valley), later on. Have fun!


  1. My link is here, Kristjaan. Will have no lights at 7.00 pm to link up on your blog. If it is possible to do so for me, please. I am happy to know your dad is doing well. .

  2. Kristjaan, I will pray for your dad. I hope that there is something that can be done to help him recover quickly.

  3. Jane's haiku about tasting each other is quite sensual!

  4. I am so glad your father is improving, will continue to hope for the best

  5. When I read all the comments from yesterday I realise what a group you have! We are with you Kristjaan. Wonderful post - and you are right. Carpe Diem MUST go on.

  6. I am so sorry to hear about your dad. I am glad he is doing better and hope he continues to rally. You are in my thoughts.

  7. It's wonderful to hear good news about your father ... he, you and your family are in my thought!