Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,
This month we are exploring all kigo (seasonwords) for winter not only the classical kigo, but also the modern kigo as gathered by Jane Reichhold in her Saijiki "A Dictionary of Haiku". Today I have a wonderful classical kigo for you to work with ... setsubun. This is a not so well known classical kigo and I think I have to give you a small explanation of this classical kigo.
Setsubun: The last day of winter. Features ritualistic chasing of devils out of the house, allowing good luck for the spring (the traditional New Year). Compare the English ritual of opening front and back doors.
Setsubun is an annual Japanese festival on February 3rd. Setsubun is the beginning of Spring according to the old Japanese lunar calendar. It's traditionally believed that the spirit world comes closer to our world at this time of year. Strips of paper with people's wishes inscribed on them are placed over the lanterns. It's thought that wishes may be granted on Setsubun, but they also think that, through the idea of having the spirit world closer by at this event, demons can escape to our world..
|Daffodils ... sign of Setsubun|
And here is an example of a haiku by myself themed "setsubun":
dispelling the darkness
after the long cold winter
welcoming the light
Or this one with another angle:
covered with snow
winter is coming to an end
Two nice haiku (how immodest) in which I have tried to catch "setsubun".
This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until January 16th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode later on. For now ... have fun!
PS.: I am far behind with commenting and I don't know if I can catch up, but of course I will try.