Monthly Archives: May 2010

HOKKU AND THE “TEN THOUSAND THINGS”

In the last posting we reviewed Yin and Yang in hokku, and introduced the two kinds of contrast.  This latter is important in itself, so I shall say more about it. Hokku may exhibit either: 1.  Harmony of contrast or … Continue reading

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THE HOKKU OF SUMMER

All hokku are seasonal hokku, being written and marked (as practiced today) with one of the four seasons.  That comes from hokku having originated in a temperate climate.  In other climates this may vary to a summer season, a rainy … Continue reading

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WHAT AM I DOING HERE?

“Old” readers here will quickly notice the change in appearance of this site.  I hope it may aid eyes wearied by the computer screen. With this change of “look” and of season, I want to take a few moments for … Continue reading

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A HOKKU FOR VESĀKHA

I was remiss in not posting a hokku for Vesākha, the remembrance of the Birth, the Enlightenment Nibbana (Nirvana) and the Passing Away (Parinibbana) of the Buddha. Vesākha takes place at the time of the full moon in May. In … Continue reading

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IRRECOVERABLE AS LYONNESSE

It is time to ease into summer hokku. As a kind of introduction, here is one of the most evocative excerpts in English literature, from Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited, filled with transience, the sense that all things are ephemeral and … Continue reading

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MEMORIAL DAY

When this verse by Issa was written it was an autumn hokku.  In the United States, however, it is a verse for the end of May — for Memorial Day, which used to be called “Decoration Day”: There is no … Continue reading

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NO MODERN HAIKU, THANK YOU!

R. H. Blyth recognized even in his day that the hokku had fallen on hard times.  He speaks with favor of Bashō, of Buson, of Issa, and even speaks of the “objective dryness yet pregnancy of Shiki” (who began haiku … Continue reading

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