Google+ Followers

Friday, January 31, 2014

David Gerard is The Haiku Guy; Issa is the master

the field's too much
for one man alone...
rustic fan

Issa - 1804

hitori de wa tebaru hatake ya shibu uchiwa

Literally, Issa ends simply with the image of the "rustic fan" (shibu uchiwa), but this noun implies the action of fanning. The hard-working farmer takes a break, attempting to cool his sweaty face with the fan. Shibu can mean "unrefined"; Kogo dai jiten (Shogakukan 1983) 792.

Get your daily Issa haiku from the Haiku Guy at

Pure Land Haiku: The Art of Priest Issa

Pure Land Haiku cover
No mere "child's poet," Issa is an aware and committed artist who celebrates, in a lifetime of haiku, the "Other Power" of Amida Buddha: a power that transforms the individual and universe or, more exactly, the individual/universe in their inseparableness. Pure Land Haiku: The Art of Priest Issa is the first book-length English-language treatment of this remarkable Japanese poet in relation to his joyful, "priestly" mission.

The first edition of this book, published by Buddhist Books International in 2004 (ISBN 0-914910-53-1), is out of print. The Revised Second Edition (ISBN 978-0-9859003-9-7) is available as an e-book for Kindle and Nook. Note that the book includes Japanese texts, which only the newer Kindles can display. Japanese texts on Nook will appear as question marks.

No comments: