On The Rough Road

Several months ago, I followed a month long haiku prompt list at Carpe Diem Haiku Kai based on Basho’s travelogue “Oku no Hosomichi”, hosted by  

I’ve compiled my responses along with some new haiku and prose into a piece I call “On the Rough Road”.  You can find it here in PDF form or through the widget on the sidebar.

ON THE ROUGH ROAD

 

 

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Fading

a solitary leaf stirs in the snow
nothing –
the footprints are fading

For CDHK where the inspiration is a melancholic haiku.

 

 

 

 

Honey Glazed Sky

honey glazed sky
spring recites
the secret poems of dawn

For CDHK where we learn Basho’s ‘Sense Switching‘ or ‘Synesthesia’ technique in which the poet presents an unexpected or different sensory aspect of the object. “..closely associating a sensory experience of one kind with a sensory experience of another..” -Toshimi Horiuchi
Basho writes:
pine and cedar
to admire the wind
smell the sound
also
the sea darkens —
a wild duck’s call
faintly white

Lost

tumbleweed
at a crossroads
asking for directions

For CDHK where we learn Basho’s ‘Pseudo Science‘ technique which is not merely a distorted view of science presented with poetic license but a valid thought process in the “other reality” that exists in the poet’s mind. “…what we see or experience there is so real that we report it as a normal phenomenon. Thus my name “pseudo-science..” – Jane Reichhold
Basho writes:
a falling sound
that sours my ears
plum rain

Waiting

all of infinity
in an infinitesimal double helix
waiting…

For CDHK where we learn Basho’s ‘Paradox” technique which encourages the reader to ponder about the juxtaposition of two incongruous realities. “..one must not think ill of the paradox, for the paradox is the passion of thought, and the thinker without the paradox is like the lover without passion…” – Søren Kierkegaard
Basho writes:
black forest
whatever you may say
a morning of snow

Stillness

in this churn of sky and sea and time
from whom will the mind
learn stillness?

For CDHK where we learn Basho’s ‘riddle” technique that tries not to posture as intriguing rhetoric but to trigger, like a Zen Koan, philosophical introspection. An old classic is “ “Am I a butterfly dreaming I am a man or a man dreaming I am a butterfly?”
Basho writes:
has spring come
or the year gone away?
second last day

Mynah

dark clouds rumble
a lone mynah
swallows a tear

For CDHK where we learn Basho’s ‘Narrowing Focus” technique in which you start with a wide-angle lens for the 1st line, switch to a normal lens for the 2nd and zoom in for a close up for the 3rd line, drawing the reader to a single basic element of the haiku.
Basho writes:
old village
not a house without
a persimmon tree