THE WIND OF AUTUMN

Sometimes I like to take an old hokku and modify it to make it fit an American environment:

falling apart

An abandoned house;
The wind of autumn
Over the bare floor. 

This is a “harmony of similarity” hokku, in which we feel the relationship of the various elements that reflect one another — the principle called “internal reflection.”

Autumn is the time when the Yang life forces recede.  We see that in nature, with the dying of plants and the trees losing their leaves.  In this verse it manifests in the empty house — the house from which life has departed.  And we see it in the bare floor, over which now only the autumn wind moves.  It all gives us a spare and rather lonely feeling, which is often the case with autumn hokku.

In the original of this verse by Teiga, the house was a brushwood hut and the floor tatami mats.

 

David

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