Favourite Poems XLIX

Eight haiku by Matsuo Bashōtranslated by R. K. Blyth. Wikipedia tells us the Shinto priesthood deified Basho in 1793, a sort of minor god of poetry, and for a time critical evaluation of his work was literally considered blasphemous.

1

Moonlight slants through
The vast bamboo grove:
A cuckoo cries

2

Ah, summer grasses!
All that remains
Of the warriors dreams.

3

Along this road
Goes no one;
This autumn evening.

4

From time to time
The clouds give rest
To the moon beholders.

5

The butterfly is perfuming
It’s wings in the scent
Of the orchid.

6

Yes, spring has come
This morning a nameless hill
Is shrouded in mist.

7

It is deep autumn
My neighbor
How does he live, I wonder.

8

The old pond
A frog jumps in
The sound of water.

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