Sunday, April 22, 2018

Carpe Diem Crossroads #7 this autumn sky (Sōgi)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Well ... it wasn't really what I wanted to do today, but I have a third post for you today. It is time again for a new episode of our "crossroads" feature, the feature in which I challenge you to create a so called "fusion-haiku" based on two given haiku. Today I have two haiku for you by a not so renown classical haiku poet Sōgi.

Sōgi (1421–1502), was a Japanese poet. He came from a humble family from the province of Kii or Ōmi, and died in Hakone on September 1, 1502. Sōgi was a Zen monk from the Shokokuji temple in Kyoto and he studied poetry, both waka and renga. In his 30's he became a professional renga poet.

During his travels to almost every corner of Japan, he was welcomed by the most powerful political, military and literary figures of his day. He attracted more disciples than any other poet of his generation. After traveling throughout Japan, he returned to Kyoto where he commanded great respect.


He is best-remembered for his renga, wherein two or more poets collaborate to create a poem, by writing alternate stanzas. In Sōgi's day, such renga were typically 100 verses in length. Arising from the court tradition of waka, renga was cultivated by the warrior class as well as by courtiers, and some of the best renga poets, such as Sōgi, were commoners.

Sōgi is considered the greatest master of renga, his two most famous works being "Three Poets at Minase" (Minase sangin hyakuin, 1488) and "Three Poets at Yuyama" (Yuyama sangin hyakuin, 1491).[3] This outstanding poet left more than 90 works (anthologies, diaries, poetic criticisms and manuals, among others). Before his death, he wrote "Sōgi Alone", which mostly includes his memoirs.

Here are the two haiku to create your "fusion-haiku" with:

ah, for coolness,
it rivals the water's depth -
this autumn sky

© Sōgi

And this one, in a translation by myself:

abandoned house
the garden taken over -
butterfly home

© Sōgi (Tr. Chèvrefeuille)

Woodblock print Orchid and Butterflies (image found on Pinterest)
And here is my "fusion-haiku":

in the autumn sky
vague silhouette of a butterfly

first raindrops fall

© Chèvrefeuille

Have fun!

This episode of "crossroads" is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until April 29th at noon (CEST). See you ....!

Carpe Diem Romancing Haiku #2 mountain

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

What a joy ... a new episode of our brand new feature "Carpe Diem Romancing Haiku" for you all. As I stated in the first episode of this feature "I think haiku can be a love poem too, as tanka once was meant to be". In our first episode I had chosen the theme "beach" for you. For this episode I have chosen the theme "mountain".

Here at CDHK we have often seen the theme "mountain" so I think it will not a big problem to create love-haiku themed "mountain".

An example by myself:

watching a geisha
monk from high up in the mountains
he's also a man

© Chèvrefeuille

Mount Fuji

Or this one, more a love-poem without bringing love up actually, but in the deeper layer this is also a love-haiku:

drinking tea
on the porch of a mountain hut -
the almost full moon

© Chèvrefeuille

Well ... enjoy this challenge to create a "love-haiku" themed "mountain". 

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until April 29th at noon (CEST). Have fun ...!

Carpe Diem #1416 Conquest (haibun free-style)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome at a new episode of our Haiku Kai. This month we are writing all kinds of haibun. We all are storytellers, not only with our haibun, but also with our haiku, tanka or other form of Japanese poetry. Storytelling is in our blood so to say. Everyone can tell stories and you my dear haijin, visitors and travelers, are awesome story tellers.

I hope you all have had a nice weekend. My weekend wasn't that great, because my mom became hospitalized through her diabetes. Her bloodsugar was really disrupted, but after a few days her bloodsugar seems okay again. Godwilling she will be going home tomorrow.

Today I have a nice challenge for you I think and I hope you will like it. Today's pormpt is conquest and your task (if I can call it a task) is to write a free-style haibun themed conquest. So no rules, just fun to tell your story.

To give you a little bit of extra inspiration I love to share a wonderful piece of music by Vangelis with you. I think you all know this masterpiece. It was written for the movie 1492 about Columbus.

Well ... a wonderful piece of music and I think it will help to awaken your muse.

conquering the world
a small verse from a faraway country
the sun rises

© Chèvrefeuille

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until April 29th at noon (CEST). I will try to publish our new episode, apprentice, later on. For now ... have fun!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Carpe Diem Weekend Meditation #29 Use That Quote ...

!!! Open for your submissions next Sunday April 22nd at 7:00 PM (CEST) !!!

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Another week has gone by and it was a marvelous week, because the weather was awesome, almost temperatures of Summer in The Netherlands ... and I had a week off ... so I had a wonderful week. Today however wasn't a great day. My mother again had to go the hospital and is now in the hospital. She had cardiac problems, but the biggest problem today was her glucose, she is diabetic, and her sugars are extremely disturbed. So this day was a day to ... forget, but of course I cannot forget this day, because I became 55 yrs. Yes it's my birthday today.

As you all know I am writing haiku since the late eighties and I see Matsuo Basho as my sensei therefore I have chosen a quote by Basho for you to become inspired through.

Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)
At the time of his death, in 1694, Basho had more than seventy disciples, and about two thousand associates who had accepted and aligned themselves with his teachings. On the one-hundredth anniversary of his death the Shinto religious headquarters honored him by canonizing him as a deity. Thirteen years later the imperial court gave him similar status. He alone is known as a haisei, the saint of haiku. Today he is a recognized genius. (Source: Basho, The Complete Haiku by Jane Reichhold)

Basho is the saint of haiku and he was declared holy by the Shinto religion and was given the name Haisei Basho.

Here at CDHK I have often written about the beauty of his poetry. We read his "Oku-no-Hosomichi" (The Small Road Into the Deep North) and learned his haiku writing techniques. He really is a saint in my opinion and it makes me proud that I can and may say that he is my sensei, my master, my teacher.

Cherry Blossoms around Lake Biwa
For this weekend meditation I have chosen a not so renown quote by Basho, but I think this quote will inspire you ...

Here is the quote to work with:

[...] "There is nothing you can see that is not a Bashoflower; there is nothing you can think that is not the moon."[...]  Matsuo Basho

In this quote I read the "greatness" of Basho. His look at nature ... the simple words he used to give an image to his thoughts.

entwined by bare branches
the full moon

© Chèvrefeuille

While I was preparing this episode sad news arrived ... one of the best and renown dj's of the world, Avicii, has died ... he was 28 years young.

I love to share a music video to give tribute to him.

I hope you did enjoy the read and the music by Avici.

This weekend-meditation is open for your submissions next Sunday April 22nd at 7:00 PM (CEST) and will remian open until April 29th at noon (CEST). I will try to publish our new episode, conquest, later on. For now ... have a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Carpe Diem #1415 Perfume of Spring (one-bun)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome at a new episode of our wonderful Kai. This month it's all about haibun (prose and poetry). We have already seen a few different kinds of haibun here at CDHK and today I love to challenge you to create a "one-bun" inspired on our prompt "perfume of spring".

More about "one-bun" you can find in our promptlist for April 2018 (above in the menu).

During circumstances I have chosen to only give you the prompt and the task for today.

perfume of spring
This episode is open for your submissions tonight at 7:00 PM (CEST) and will remain open until April 26th at noon (CEST). I will try to publish our new weekend-meditation later on. For now ... have fun!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Carpe Diem #1414 Nakedness (kikobun)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

We are all born naked, but through the Fall of Mankind we became aware of our nudity and started to make clothing to cover our nakedness. Why? It's how we are raised and of course there will be several of you that have been raised in an other way. I had the privilege that my parents were wonderful. They first raised me with religion and the love (and respect) for God, or how you will call it. As I grew up and found my own ways, my own paths, they always were there to help me. They respected my choices and applauded my free reason, my free thought, and that has made me who I am now. I appreciate all humans, female and male, I can say that from the depth of my heart ... I love all and everthing ...

Why this introduction? I don't know, maybe I thought it had to be told, but maybe it was something or someone that guided me I don't know.

Today our theme is Nakedness as you already have understood I think. Imagine ... how would the world look as Eve hadn't taken the apple? Than we hadn't know that we are naked, than we would have no need for clothes or clothing. So ... here it goes your task for today is to create a kikobun inspired on our prompt nakedness.

Here you can find the story of Eve.

I remember that I have done this theme earlier here at CDHK and I once shared a haiga in which you can find "nakedness" in an other way than I described above.

Well ... I think you all love to start writing so I will end this episode. Enjoy this theme. By the way above in the menu you can find our "prompt-list" for this month on that page you also can find an explanation of the kikobun.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until April 25th at noon (CEST). I will try to publish our new episode, perfume of spring, later on. Have fun!

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Carpe Diem #1413 Loneliness (Haibun in the classical way)

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

I love to wander along the beach, only the sound of waves and seagulls, all alone. I love to sit down in the backyard on my own, only nature and my own thoughts and feelings. I love being alone sometimes. I think I need that ... I have a busy life, my family, my work as an oncology-nurse, being your host and being myself, the haiku poet Chèvrefeuille. Loneliness is something you can choose for, but mostly loneliness is not something that we choose. There are enough humans that are alone, who live their life in loneliness but didn't choose for it. Loneliness ... our theme for today. I think we have had this theme earlier here at Carpe Diem Haiku Kai:

Here are a few links to earlier posts:

Carpe Diem #405
Carpe Diem Tanka Splendor #17
Carpe Diem #886
Carpe Diem Namaste, The Spiritual Way #6

Loneliness ... what does it mean for you. Do you choose loneliness sometimes, to find new inspiration and new energy? Loneliness ... a strong emotion with a strong task today, because I love to challenge you to create a classical haibun. In other words, the haiku (or tanka) have to be written in the classical way. (More about this classical way of haiku-ing you can find above in Carpe Diem Lecture 1) Your haibun may have a maximum of 300 words.

Here is a (non-classical) haiku from my archives about "loneliness":

in front of the fireplace
an empty bottle and broken wine glasses 
after the quarrel

© Chėvrefeuille

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until April 24th at noon (CEST). I will try to publish our new episode, nakedness, later on. For now ... have fun!