Friday, May 25, 2018

Carpe Diem Weekend Meditation #34 Revise That Haiku ... Kikaku's Dragonfly

!!! Open for your submissions next Sunday May 27th at 7:00 PM (CEST) !!!

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome at the last weekend-meditation of this month. The weekend-meditation is a feature that gives you (and me) time to meditate and contemplate before submitting to our Kai. Every weekend I choose another feature (from our rich history or newly created) for you to work with.

This weekend I love to challenge you to revise a haiku by a classical haiku poet. Try to make the haiku better without loosing the scene the haiku is about. For this "revise that haiku" I have chosen a haiku by Kikaku (1661-1707), one of Basho's disciples.

Takarai Kikaku also known as Enomoto Kikaku, was a Japanese haikai poet and among the most accomplished disciples of Matsuo Bashō. His father was an Edo doctor, but Kikaku chose to become a professional haikai poet rather than follow in his footsteps.

Red Dragonfly (photo © Michael Hawk)

Kikaku is best known for his haiku, such as the one in this anecdote about him and his master:
One day, Kikaku composed a haiku,

Red dragonfly / break off its wings / Sour cherry

which Bashō changed to,

Sour cherry / add wings to it / Red dragonfly;

thus saying that poetry should add life to life, not take life away from life. His master is known to have denigrated Kikaku's 'flippant efforts'. Kikaku wrote of coarser subjects than Bashō, and in this respect his poetry was closer to earlier haikai. Kikaku set the tone for haikai from Bashō's death until the time of Yosa Buson in the late 18th century.

Kikaku left an important historical document, describing Bashō's final days, and the immediate aftermath of his death, which has been translated into English.

(By the way the above photo is made by Michael Hawk, he has a wonderful website about Nature. For sure worth a visit. website: )

Red Dragonfly haiga

Here is the haiku to revise, can you re-create this haiku as for example Basho did?:

red dragonfly
break off its wings
sour cherry

© Kikaku

A lot to meditate and contemplate about ... well you have a whole weekend to think this over and create your revised haiku ...

Have fun!

This weekend-meditation is open for your submissions next Sunday, May 27th at 7:00 PM (CEST) and will remain open until Sunday June 3rd at noon (CEST).

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