A November with Basho, Day 21

Tada Shrine

Image courtesy of Mass Ave 975 at the English Wikipedia [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)%5D

At a village called Komatsu:

Aptly named Komatsu

Child Pine, a breeze blows over

pampas and clover

Here we visited Tada Shrine to see Sanemori’s helmet and a piece of his brocade armor-cloth presented to him by Lord Yoshitomo when he served the Genji clan. His helmet was no common soldier’s gear: engraved with chrysanthemums and ivy from eyehole to earflap, crowned with a dragon’s head between two horns. After Sanemori died on the battlefield, Kiso Yoshinaka sent it with a prayer, hand-carried to the shrine by Higuchi Juro, Sanemori’s friend. The story’s inscribed on the shrine.


a great soldier’s empty helmet,

a cricket sings

Basho, “Narrow Road to the Interior,” translated by Sam Hamill, the Essential Basho, p. 30-31

Grateful Heartfulness

Breathe. The moment opens, like sun-drenched petals, as I release my cares. Breathe. The feel of air on my nostrils. The gentle sound of gurgling water, and the banging of pipes as the heat turns on. The subtle reflection of morning light on white drapes. Just these, no more. Who needs more?

When I allow my gratitude to arise, and when I feel it flow through me with each breath, I feel an accompanying peace. Perhaps this is the peace the world cannot give.

I know it’s the peace that I, myself, can give away.

November twilight

seeing their faces

I smile

I’m hosting Haibun Monday today over at dVerse Poets Pub. We’re poeming on gratitude. Come join us!

18 replies »

  1. Frank, Basho’s final haiku is great. On a silly side note, I do wonder about this part’s translation by Hamill, however: “Aptly named Komatsu -Child Pine,…” because Komatsu means “small pine” 小松, not “child pine” 子松 with both small and child pronounce “ko”.

    Meanwhile, your haibun was fun, overlapping with my haibun’s implications a bit. And I wonder, does the peace of “just now” ever real consist of “just now” — the white drapes and gurgling water — or is it pregnant with flavors of suffering or clutter prior and the contrast is “peace”. That is what my haibun asks. Thanks for hosting, mate.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Saint Teresa of Kolkata said – a smile is the beginning of love. Yout haibun evokes that feeling in its giving smile.
    Happy you dropped by to read mine


    Liked by 1 person

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