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Book of Days

BOOK OF DAYS: A POET AND NATURALIST TRIES TO FIND POETRY IN EVERY DAY

Filtering by Tag: New Year

January 1, 2016: Featuring "guest writer" Buson

Kristen Lindquist

The 18th century Japanese poet Buson was one of the "Three Tenors" of classical haiku (along with Basho and Issa). His New Year's poem here, translated by Sam Hamill, highlights his sense of humor. It also seemed a fun way to kick off a new year of my daily haiku blog, because I can so relate to that smug sense of self-satisfaction.
 
New Year's first poem
written, now self-satisfied,
O haiku poet!
 

February 10: Bean-Throwing

Kristen Lindquist

In my Beginner's Japanese class tonight we learned about Setsubun, the Bean-Throwing Cermony held as part of the annual Spring Festival on February 3, the eve of spring in Japan. The ritual, called mamemaki, is supposed to drive away evil spirits from the year ahead. There was no little irony in imitating the ritual with our teacher by tossing beans outside the door into three feet of snow. If only it were really the cusp of spring here.
 
What you say:
Oni wa soto (demons outside)
Fuku wa uchi (happiness inside)
 
Beans tossed into snow--
if only this ritual
could conjure spring.