Monthly Archives: October 2012

WITH FRIENDS LIKE YOU, WHO NEEDS ENEMIES? HOPKINS’ “THOU ART INDEED JUST…”

In previous postings we have seen the ups and downs of the “religious” life of Gerard Manley Hopkins displayed in his verse.  You will recall that he was a convert to Catholicism who became a Jesuit, then spent a good … Continue reading

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HAPPY HALLOWEEN FROM KOBAYASHI ISSA

Issa wrote: Withered pampas grass; “Now once there was an old witch….” That verse does not come off quite the same in English, because of the term “pampas grass” that we must use for what Issa knew as susuki — … Continue reading

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SOMETHING FOR HALLOWEEN

Dear readers, Halloween is near, and with it comes the end of autumn by the old calendar.  I was working today on readying one of my books for (I hope) eventual availability as an inexpensive e-book.  I happened to be … Continue reading

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RAIN BEATS ON RAIN

Gyōdai wrote one of the simplest and best hokku, which in my region would be an autumn verse: Ochiba ochikasanarite ame ame wo utsu Falling-leaves fall-pile up rain rain wo beats Leaves fall And pile up; Rain beats on rain. … Continue reading

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THE SOUND OF WATER

Near and far — The sound of water, The falling leaves. (Variation on an old hokku by Bashō)

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SUBTLE STATES OF MIND: THE REASON FOR HOKKU

As all regular readers here know, a hokku is a sensory event set in the context of a particular season.  That is basic knowledge.  But did you ever ask yourself why?  What, after all, is the point of recording sensory, … Continue reading

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WHAT IS A FROG DOING IN AUTUMN?

As long-time readers here know, hokku is seasonal verse.  Every verse is an event set in the context of a particular season. In old hokku (which was Japanese), this became too systematized, so that if one wrote about frogs, it … Continue reading

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