How did you enjoy the twittering, haijin? Very well, it seems! Congratulations to last week’s contributors:Haikai Challenge Participants
|1. Ken Gierke / rivrvlogr|
3. Reena Saxena
4. ennle madresan
5. Jules @ fiction
|6. Jane Dougherty|
8. Pat R
9. Dwight L. Roth
10. The Dark Netizen
|11. Helene Vaillant|
12. Xenia Tran
13. Revived Writer
It’s warm outside, today. Mira noticed that the daffodils have come up and opened. The Forsythias, too. Soon, cherry blossoms will bloom:
A cherry blossom is a flower of several trees of genus Prunus, particularly the Japanese cherry, Prunus serrulata, which is called sakura after the Japanese (桜 or 櫻; さくら).
Currently they are widely distributed, especially in the temperate zone of the Northern Hemisphere including Japan, Nepal, India, Taiwan, Korea, Mainland China, West Siberia, Iran and Afghanistan. Along with the chrysanthemum, the cherry blossom is considered the national flower of Japan.
All varieties of cherry blossom trees produce small, unpalatable fruit or edible cherries. Edible cherries generally come from cultivars of the related species Prunus aviumand Prunus cerasus.
In Japan, cherry blossoms symbolize clouds due to their nature of blooming en masse, besides being an enduring metaphor for the ephemeral nature of life, an aspect of Japanese cultural tradition that is often associated with Buddhist influence, and which is embodied in the concept of mono no aware. The association of the cherry blossom with mono no aware dates back to 18th-century scholar Motoori Norinaga. The transience of the blossoms, the exquisite beauty and volatility, has often been associated with mortality and graceful and readily acceptance of destiny and karma; for this reason, cherry blossoms are richly symbolic, and have been utilized often in Japanese art, manga, anime, and film, as well as at musical performances for ambient effect. There is at least one popular folk song, originally meant for the shakuhachi(bamboo flute), titled “Sakura“, and several pop songs. The flower is also represented on all manner of consumer goods in Japan, including kimono, stationery, and dishware.
Cherry blossom season has already begun in Japan:
This year’s sakura — as the cherry blooms are known in Japan — were predicted to start earlier than usual due to a warmer winter, but the buds held off. The blooms began opening in Kyoto on March 27 and are just about to enter their two-week period of peak viewing.
Tokyo’s Shinjuku Gyeon, the cherry blossoms began opening on March 21. Throughout the city, the trees are at their prime viewing for the year. And, of course, everyone is gathering to admire and photograph the flowers.
Over the next month, the cherry blossom blooms will move northward through Japan, according to Japan Guide.this link opens in a new tab The cherry blossoms are predicted to reach Sapporo, in the very north of the country, by early May.
Some haijin may consider cherry blossoms to be a haikai cliche. It is true that innumerable haiku, tanka and other Japanese-style poetry have been written about them. Nevertheless, cherry blossoms embody the transitory nature of both Spring and our lives. What kigo, therefore, better reminds us to remain mindful of the present than sakura?
This week, write the haikai poem of your choice (haiku, senryu, haibun, tanka, haiga, renga, etc.) that alludes to cherry blossoms (sakura)
Here’s how the challenge works:
1. write the haikai poem of your choice.
2. post the link of your post to Mister Linky.
3. pingback by posting the link to the challenge on your site.
4. read and comment on other contributors’ posts.
Bask in the cherry blossom glory, haijin. For those of you celebrating National Poetry Month by writing a “thirty-in-thirty”, good luck!