The lotus flower
Is sustained by mud;
This single dewdrop,
Just as it is,
Manifests the real body of truth.
translated by John Stevens
Pink & Red Peonies with Butterfly - Hokusai
My butterfly came
to sit in my flower,
Reading Kerouac and Ikkyū together, as I've been doing, you see immediately their kindred spirits. Jack here violates every haiku rule and yet the poem could not be any more haiku-like then it already is. Ikkyū is playing it a little more straight his lovely tankaesque poem.
These little books that fit in the palm of your hand (.pdf) have been such a delightful way to sustain me as I work through the bigger project I have on my plate (which the closer I get to it, the bigger it is - who'd a thunk?). Master Issa must have something to say of this?
Dragonfly (detail) by Utamaro
the distant mountain
reflected in his eyes...
translated by David G. Lanoue
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Go to the LitRock web site for a list of all 130 songs