Archive for the Poem Category

Coriander

Posted in Haipho, Poem with tags on May 17, 2015 by Kazue Gill

コリアンダーの花が可愛いと
何度も言うあなたが可愛いよ。

You who, time and again, say
“How sweet is this coriander flower”…
How sweet are you!

コリアンダー

 

 

 

 

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in deepening grey

Posted in Haiqua, News, Poem with tags on April 26, 2015 by Tito

. Seemed I was there, thoroughly involved, but did emerge unscathed. Had tried to find Kaz. Oh, Kaz! Where are you?! Had woken up. She had been here, all the while, in Kyoto beside me…
. I had seen the Earthquake in my dream a number of hours before it had happened, but didn’t know where it was. Now that I do, my heart bleeds for Kathmandu and, further to the west, for Besisahar and the lower Marsyangdi, for the small towns and villages around Gorkha – beautiful places, all, and all of which I know. What might have befallen the Shangri-La that was Manang? So much more to learn in the coming weeks. I do not look forward to them.

.. Obliging rain –
.. It comes at the crest of a ridge
.. In front of a tea-house
.. With a river view…

………… (haiqua, written between Phalesangu and Besisahar, 14.6.90)

. Am feeling the same shock now as when King Birendra and his Queen were assassinated in 2001 and the Nepalese Royal House was toppled. Why does Fate have it in for humble, good-natured, fine-featured Nepal? I worry for my friends, Hikmat, Hariprasad, Indhu, Vinod, and all of their wives and families. How long will it be before I know what happened to them? Punyaratna Sakya, from the same clan as the Buddha, Sakya-muni, rang me this morning to assure me that he, anyway, was alright.
.  Those marvellous pagodas on which I had sat as a fledgling poet and youth philosopher with long hair, where for the first time in my life (1971) I had watched ‘time go by’ – have any survived? We are told that the Khasthamandap, the city’s oldest building, the very one that gave the fabled city its name, actually collapsed in an aftershock onto people donating blood. How unutterably cruel is the earth goddess! Nepalis must be wondering what they have done wrong. ‘The wildest dreams of Kew are the facts of Kathmandu’ (Rudyard Kipling). Savage even.
. Peace, peace be unto you, my dear Nepal …

.. The valley smokes in silver twilight…
.. After a storm.
.. The fuming heavens will be our veil
.. For night-time’s tight lament.

.. The crickets and the bullfrogs
.. Pick up the shredded fragments of this day
.. And weave them into night.

.. A lonely temple bell
.. Attempts to break the listless air,
.. But fails
.. (As also does the light).

.. The hour of the dog
.. Is heralded:
.. Today – in deepening grey…

………… (poem, written by the Vishnumati River, Kathmandu, 23.5.72)

At Juniper Rock

Posted in Autumn, Poem on December 6, 2014 by Tito

A holy place 1

Fire and Ice

Posted in Poem on December 2, 2013 by david mccullough

SONY DSC

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
 From what I’ve tasted of desire
… I hold with those who favor fire.
 But if it had to perish twice,
 I think I know enough of hate
 To say that for destruction ice
 Is also great
 And would suffice.

… … …  . … … ... … . Robert Frost

1972

Posted in Chinese Classic, Poem with tags on July 17, 2013 by Tito

1972. At the time, a few British poets were as open to Chinese 4-line ‘cut-shorts’ as they were to 4-line translations of haiku.

………… In the hills meeting no one,
………… Hearing only the echo of voices.
………… Sunlight flickers through a dense wood
………… And the green moss is lit once more.
…………………… (Wang Wei, C8th)

……….……………………………….. Evening is shining in the gardens,
…….………………………………….. the thrush has started again,
………………………………………  I have come to buy some books
……………….……………………….. at the top of the town.
.……………………..…………………………… (Martin Snellgrove, Feb. 72 in England)

…………………… A silver cloud bursts in the hills,
…………………… A rainbow flows in the valley;
…………………… The fish eagle wheels to greet me
…………………… On my return from the capital.
………………………………  (Tito, Sep. 72 in Nepal)

Two years later, I arrived in the land of Basho with a yew staff in my hand made by Martin. Into its knobbly top was carved the face of a man ‘neither young nor old, neither Western nor Oriental’.

More Classic Stuff

Posted in Haiku, Japanese Modern, Poem on February 9, 2011 by Richard Steiner

You’ll remember that I was editing some translations of Santoka’s haiku and shared a few with you all. Here’s more, plus a bonus of works by Hosai, Santoka’s contemporary, and a lovely Chinese poem I wrote long ago when my name was Liu Tsung Yuan.

Santoka’s 8 haiku:

A dragonfly atop a sedge hat; I just walk on.

On a rainy day, walking barefoot thru my hometown.

Into my iron bowl also falls a shower of hailstones.

His back soaked by the rain; still, he just walks on.

In a rain shower, I walk to a nearby mountain.

Santoka was the prime modern example of Walking Zen, following Ikkyu’s example set in the Muromachi Period, tho S. only walked for a few years, whereas I. probably walked for over 20.

At a loss what to do, I walk alone on this country road.

Thinking nothing, just tasting the water gushing from a wayside spring. (Is this zen, or what?)

When the leaves begin falling, the water will become tasty.

Hosai’s 6 haiku:

I have a loud cough, all alone in this quiet hut.

Such a bright moonlit night; in bed alone, still I can enjoy the view.

I can see a little of the sea through a small window, the only one in my hut.

Tomorrow is New Year’s Day; only Buddha and I will greet it in this lonely hut.

The pine’s branches are all hanging down; I chant the Name.  (the Name of Amida Buddha, presumably.)

Winds singing thru the pines; at dawn and at sunset I toll the temple bell.

Hosai passed away almost 20 years  before Santoka. Both were recognized in their lifetimes to be superior poets.

An old Chinese poem: ‘On a Snowy River’

Birds have ceased wheeling thru the mountains,
Footsteps are no longer seen on any snowy path.
An old man, strawclad, is seated in a small boat,
Engaged in fishing alone on the snowy river.

Such nice morsels to chew on. And here’s a haiku written with the name, Richard:

Beside the winter river
neither birds nor fish are seen;
nothing beside myself.

Maudlin to  be sure; must be the influence of some earlier poets. But hearing the call loudly in my ears for contributions, just had to pen something out.

The Woodchopper

On the Bullet-Train

Posted in Autumn, Poem on September 30, 2010 by Mark

That graveyard there among the stubble
of how many rice-fields and seasons?–
the merest glimpse from a window.

9.30.2010