Seeing off the dead

floating lanterns cirkuOsawa Pond, Daikakuji, Kyoto, 20.8.13

Click on the photo to enlarge and read the poem …

7 Responses to “Seeing off the dead”

  1. Richard Donovan Says:

    full moon
    round ripple
    cycling back

  2. The custom in Japan is for relatives of one recently deceased to ease the spirit’s return to the other world, after it has stayed with the living family over the O-Bon holiday, by launching a symbolic, prayer-inscribed lantern onto a river, lake or the sea. This year, the ritual coincided with the August full moon, seen in the photo only as a trembling white reflection.

    • Hisashi Miyazaki Says:

      Sorry, Tito: This in not in reply but my own comment. My PC doesn’t work well for leaving a response.
      The photo reminded me of Hakusen’s haiku.
      秋の日やまなこ閉づれば紅蓮の国 渡邉白泉
      autumn day –
      in my closed eyes, the country
      of pink lotus flowers
      (Watanabe, Hakusen. The last autumn before his death in 1969.)

  3. Beautiful. And so fitting that it’s a circular haiku, given the cyclical return of the dead each year during O-Bon.

  4. Wonderful how we can enter this poem at any phrase and make the same journey. I think the daytime picture adds an interesting contrast to the final destination ” to the moon”.

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