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Reflection on Haiku.

Haiku and metaphor originate in situations that bring two aspects of consciousness together simultaneously as a comparison or more basic juxtaposition. One aspect is a sensory image, the other is a series of images that has mellowed into a concept or an idea stored in memory. The conscious mind addresses both aspects as a unified situation having a concrete sensory and an abstract cognitive part, the two parts binding in a moment of emotional comprehension which joins them, perhaps for the first time.


Too, haiku and metaphor have an additional dimension involving words and phrases representing the experiential situation as a disciplined language event. The experience of emotional understanding is given linguistic form, and the entire ensemble of sensory image, idea, emotional insight, and specific language is referred to as a haiku or metaphor.

a tethered horse

snow

in both stirrups

-Yosa Buson

Our writer adds:

What’s the situation here? The rider has dismounted and is not minding his steed, staying overlong at the tavern, perhaps, or the whorehouse. He is inferred but not even mentioned, so we enter the consciousness of the horse. How does it feel to be left out in the cold?

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https://i2.wp.com/www.jmbamboo.com/images/pond.jpg

Furu ike ya
kawazu tobikomu
mizu no oto

-Basho

old pond
a frog jumps into
the sound of water

Translated by Jane Reichhold

The old pond
A frog jumped in,
Kerplunk!

Translated by Alan Ginsberg

For 30 more translations plus one commentary go here.

I should also mention that Reichhold’s  Basho The Complete Haiku is the best collection of haiku ever.

My attempt:

an old pond
a frog jumps into
the water sounds

refrigeratoe-500x300

My bones
feel the quilts;
a frosty night.

-Buson

Suddenly thinking of it
I went out and was sweeping the garden;
a spring evening

-Tairo

Will summer rains
return Mount Fuji
into the lake?

-Buson

The moon beginning to fall
on four or five people
dancing

-Buson

The true story here.

Peeping through
the willow, lonely
with stars

-Chora

This day on which
the cherry blossoms fell,
has drawn to its close

-Chora

Follow me on the Twittah

  • What's more embarrassing: that I'm eating gluten free rice crackers for a snack or that I'm even asking this? 3 months ago
  • Youngest son's soccer team kicks more goals than the other team. Still loses. 4 months ago
  • Hey buddy, nice purse. Yeah I know it's a baby bjorn & that you're an amazing dad, but the thing is you'll never catch me in that thing. 4 months ago
  • To forestall my midlife crisis, my wife is allowing me to put a racers stripe on the mini van. 4 months ago
  • I don't care if you think I'm crude & sexist, if I see you with two large coffee mugs and you're my wife I'm going to say, "Hey, nice mugs." 4 months ago

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