October, 2003

This page is written monthly by Harumi Okochi,
and sometimes Harumi's friends join.
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Aki no Ku
(Haiku of Autumn)

Aki  is here.
Aki means Autumn.
The Chinese character above right is Aki.
It has two parts. The left part means "crop". The right part is "fire".
Aki: new and old characters

Aki ( Chinese pronunciation is "Shu") had originally three parts (right).
The lost part was "bug".
To burn the bad bugs on the crop was important for the next good harvest.
Aki also means "harvest".
Isn't it fun to look at a Chinese character very carefully and imagine what was the original meaning?

It is also very important to understand the original meaning of a Chinese character which is used in a very short poem "Haiku".
The Haiku poets select a letter among some letters of the same meaning, because the letter itself inspires and expands an image, and also puts some fragrance to the poem. The sound also is very important. Listening to a Haiku should please your ears.

 Here are some Aki no Ku (Autumn Haikus) which I found in a very beautiful book "Haiku The poetic key to Japan", published on July 17, 2003, by P. I .E. Books in Tokyo.
The author is Mutsuo Takahashi, a world renowned poet, and he is a good friend of ours for almost 20 years, and English translation is by the famous Mr. Lee Gurga, an extinguished American Haiku poet. The book has many fantastic photos by Hakudo Inoue, also an old friend of ours. You can buy the book and see those photos, please. I will not harm Hakudo's beauty of the photography by scanning them with my poor skill.
So the photos are the ones I collected from here and there.

I hope you will enjoy the invitation to Haiku World.

Star Festival;
with my hair wet
I meet someone

tanabata ya kami nureshi mama hito ni au
by Takako
one by one
the stars become bright and clear
myriad crickets

dandanni hoshi akirakani mushi shigeshi
by Tatsuko
a diamond of dew
one single drop
on top of the stone

kongo no tsuyu hitotsubu ya ishi no ue
by Bosha

sliding door paper design "grass and dew drops"

photo by Hakudo Inoue
moon at its zenith
I have passed through
a poor town

tsuki tenshin mazushiki ,machi wo tori keri
by Buson
boundless field of flowers
I come to it
and pick a few

manmoku no hanano yuki hana sukoshi tsumu
by Toshiro

grains of new rice
each one blessed with
a greenish tint

shinmai no tsubutsubu aomi watari keri
by Koji
first at the rim
of a large white chrysanthemum
darkness falls

tairin no shiragiku no he ga mazu kure nu
bu Shuson

Grandmother's Obi of Shiragiku design
my journey's red leaves
more and more
a deeper red

waga tabi no momiji iyoiyo kokari keri
by Toshio

How do you like Haiku?
I know it is very popular all over the world. It is easy, I guess, to start Haiku, but it is very difficult to be a good Haiku Poet. I sometimes make Haikus, but I will never let you see them. They are in my secret notebook.
So, good-bye, my Haiku friends.      
                   Poetically yours,
                                                Harumi Okochi

PS Please send your Haiku by e-mail. I will add them on this page.

Here is a Haiku, sent to me by e-mail on November 3, 2003. Thank you, Dave-san.
The color has fled
From the grass near my cottage
Fearing winter's wrath
Dave De Groot

Thank you very much for visiting this page.
I hope you will return next month.
Yours, Harumi Okochi

Proprietress of Ryokan Yoyokaku

  Mail to Harumi Okochi