Thursday, July 16, 2015

On The Trail With Basho Encore #9 Bridge of Morning

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

It's time for a new episode of "On The Trail With Basho Encore". This week I have a nice haiku by Basho about moon-viewing. Also a great one, but not so well known. As we know, the moon is a season word for autumn. So this one is an autumn verse written in 1689.

asamutsu ya   tsukimi no tabi no   ake banare

bridge of morning
a journey of moon-viewing
at dawn

© Basho

With this haiku came a preface: "When we crossed the bridge of Asamutsu, which is popularly known as 'Asazu', I recall a passage in 'The Pillow Book of Sei Shanagan (a female poet) who wrote: "The most interesting bridges are the bridge of Asamutsu, (and of Nagara and of Amabiko)". This is the very bridge.”

According to Jane Reichhold the third sentence 'ake banare' in a longer translation would be to say 'to leave the darkness of night into the light of morning'. The bridge of Asamutsu is about 8 km south of Fukui, in Asuwa. Personally I love the longer translation of the third sentence, but it's really to long 'at dawn' says the same.
A closer look, pictures the moon in the early morning hidden behind thin clouds making her mysterious. At the same time as the moon-viewing in the early morning the sun rises to his place at the autumn sky.

And as you all know the goal of “Encore” is to write an all new haiku inspired on the given one by Basho. Well ... here I go ... a new haiku:

in the thin line
as the night flows into the day
sun and moon together

© Chèvrefeuille

Or what do you think of this one?

sun and moon dancing
as the night flows into the day -
a skylark’s song

© Chèvrefeuille

A tough task to write another haiku in Basho's Spirit. I don't know if this one has that Spirit, but I love the scene.

This episode is open for your submissions at noon (CET) and will remain open until July 23rd at noon (CET). Have fun!


  1. Here is my link. Wrote in advance as I loved the topic :-)

  2. This is a lovely prompt. I love the idea of crossing over or twilight or that time between night and day. Nice challenge.

  3. I love the second, night flows into day....