Wednesday, July 14, 2010

"How reluctantly..."

pink peony

How reluctantly
the bee emerges from deep
within the peony

As translated by Sam Hamill in The Sound of Water: Haiku by Bashō, Buson, Issa, and Other Poets.  To read some of Bashō's haiku online, visit A Selection of Matsuo Bashō's Haiku.  For more information, visit the Wikipedia page on Matsuo Bashō.

Do you have a favourite haiku?
Come join us for this month's Hello Japan! haiku mini-challenge.


  1. Hmm, From "the Essential Haiku (Edited by Robert Hass)", there is this one by Basho:

    A bee
    staggers out
    of the peony

    I wonder if this is a different version of the one you mention -- that is, are they two different versions of the original Japanese. If so, I prefer the one you put up!

  2. Valerie - It very well could be a different translation of the same haiku. I would think it's pretty hard to translate while keeping both the original meaning and the poetry, and any subtleties of language. It was for a different haiku but I found a website that lists 31 different translations from the original Japanese of a single haiku!


Thank you so much for stopping by and taking the time to comment. I love hearing from you and I read every single one!

P.S. In an effort to eliminate spam, I moderate all comments, so there will most likely be a delay between when you submit the comment and when it appears on the post. Please let me know if you have any trouble leaving comments here, and you can also chat with me on Twitter, if you prefer. Happy Reading!