Monday, January 21, 2019

Carpe Diem #1589 mandarin ducks (oshidori)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

I had a busy day today so I have a reprise episode for you this time. Maybe you can remember that we have had "mandarin ducks" as a prompt several times here at CDHK. "Mandarin Ducks" is a classical kigo for winter and there are nice haiku with this kigo for example:

furu ike no oshidori ni yuki furu yuube kana

at the old pond
snow falls on Mandarin ducks
in twilight

© Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)

Or what do you think of this one by Yosa Buson:

oshidoriya ikeni otonaki kashino ame

mandarin duck -
rain falls silently
from an oak

© Yosa Buson (Tr. Chèvrefeuille)

Mandarin Ducks
The adult male (sometimes called 'drake' for his colorful feathers) is a striking and unmistakable bird. It has a red bill, large white crescent above the eye and reddish face and "whiskers". The breast is purple with two vertical white bars, and the flanks ruddy, with two orange "sails" at the back. The female is similar to female Wood Duck, with a white eye-ring and stripe running back from the eye, but is paler below, has a small white flank stripe, and a pale tip to its bill.
The Mandarin ducklings are almost identical in look to Wood ducklings, and appear very similar to Mallard ducklings. The ducklings can be distinguished from Mallard ducklings because the eye-stripe of Mandarin ducklings (and Wood ducklings) stops at the eye, while in Mallard ducklings it reaches all the way to the bill.

Here are a few haiku from my archive themed "Mandarin Ducks":

in the moonlight 
Mandarin Ducks making love
happily together

brilliant colors
reflecting in the old pond
Mandarin drake

© Chèvrefeuille

And here is another one, also from my archive, but more inspired on the beautiful colors of the Mandarin Duck:

without sound
colored leaves dive into
the city park pond

© Chèvrefeuille

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until January 28th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode later on. For now .... have fun!

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