Haiku by Bashō

Matsuo Bashō, the most famous of the Zen poets, lived in Japan from 1644 to 1694 AD.

 

Cicada shell;
it sang itself
utterly away

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Cuckoo cries
through a thicket of bamboo
the late moon shines

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Field of cotton –
as if the moon
had flowered

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

A monk sips morning tea
it’s quiet
the chrysanthemum flowering

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Strange flower
for birds and butterflies
the autumn sky

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Weathered skeleton
in windy fields of memory
piercing like a knife

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Wild sea
in the distance over Sado
the Milky Way

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

As they begin to rise again
chrysanthemum faintly smell
after the flooding rain

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Autumn moonlight –
a worm digs silently
into the chestnut

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Awake at night –
the sound of the water jar
crackling in the cold

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Sick on a journey
over parched fields
dreams wander on

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Bitter–tasting ice
just enough to wet the throat
of a sewer rat

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Chilling autumn rains
curtain Mount Fuji
more beautiful than before

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

Clouds –
a chance to dodge
moonviewing

 

~ ~ ~

 
 

– Matsuo Bashō

 

 

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