Thursday, May 15, 2008

I dig the haiku of Santoka Taneda. It's beautiful.

Legend has it that he was attempting to commit suicide by throwing himself into the path of an oncoming train when a Zen priest saved him and took him to a nearby temple to recuperate. Santoka himself was ordained as a Zen priest at the age of 44, and spent the remainder of his life wandering, begging, writing poetry, and drinking barrels of sake. Water, weeds, and mountains are recurring motifs in his work.

It's fall-
I sit in the wild grasses.

Frying fish,
Sometimes frying your hand-
Life alone.

(My beard's theme song:)
An uneven life,
Standing and falling.

What a splendid inn!
Mountains in both directions
And a sake shop in front.

I've something to eat
And something to make me drunk;
Rain in the weeds.

Scooping up the water,
Lifting it towards the moon,
Full of light.

If only one plows the fields,
You'll soon hear a song.

Will the town
Throw a festival
For those brought back as bones?

Wet with the morning dew,
I go in the direction I want.

It's raining outside right now, a good time to read Santoka. I'm drinking a cup of tea with cream and sugar. I could get to like this hot beverage. Bobby Bare and Skeeter Davis are on the hi-fi, singing about low-down dirty cheating.

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