Basho's thoughts on...
• Introduction to this site
• The Human Story:
• Praise for Women
• Love and Sex in Basho
• Children and Teens
• Humanity and Friendship
• On Translating Basho
• Basho Himself
• Poetry and Music
• The Physical Body
• Food, Drink, and Fire
• Animals in Basho
• Space and Time
• Letters Year by Year
• Bilingual Basho 日本語も
• 芭蕉について日本語の論文
• Basho Renku, 芭蕉連句
• Women in Basho
• BAMHAY (Basho Amazes Me! How About You?)
• New Articles


Matsuo Basho 1644~1694

The only substantial
collection in English
of Basho's renku, tanka,
letters and spoken word
along with his haiku, travel
journals, and essays.

The only poet in old-time
literature who paid attention with praise
to ordinary women, children, and teenagers
in hundreds of poems

Hundreds upon hundreds of Basho works
(mostly renku)about women, children,
teenagers, friendship, compassion, love.

These are resources we can use to better
understand ourselves and humanity.

Interesting and heartfelt
(not scholarly and boring)
for anyone concerned with
humanity.


“An astonishing range of
social subject matter and
compassionate intuition”


"The primordial power
of the feminine emanating
from Basho's poetry"


Hopeful, life-affirming
messages from one of
the greatest minds ever.

Through his letters,
we travel through his mind
and discover Basho's
gentleness and humanity.

I plead for your help in
finding a person or group
to take over my 3000 pages of Basho material,
to edit and improve the material, to receive 100%
of royalties, to spread Basho’s wisdom worldwide
and preserve for future generations.

Quotations from Basho Prose


The days and months are
guests passing through eternity.
The years that go by
also are travelers.



The mountains in silence
nurture the spirit;
the water with movement
calms the emotions.


All the more joyful,
all the more caring


Seek not the traces
of the ancients;
seek rather the
places they sought.



Basho Spoken Word


Only this, apply your heart
to what children do


"The attachment to Oldness
is the very worst disease
a poet can have."


“The skillful have a disease;
let a three-foot child
get the poem"


"Be sick and tired
of yesterday’s self."


"This is the path of a fresh
lively taste with aliveness
in both heart and words."
.

"In poetry is a realm
which cannot be taught.
You must pass through it
yourself. Some poets have made
no effort to pass through, merely
counting things and trying
to remember them.
There was no passing
through the things."


"In verses of other poets,
there is too much making
and the heart’s
immediacy is lost.
What is made from
the heart is good;
the product of words
shall not be preferred."


"We can live without poetry,
yet without harmonizing
with the world’s feeling
and passing not through
human feeling, a person
cannot be fulfilled. Also,
without good friends,
this would be difficult."


"Poetry benefits
from the realization
of ordinary words."


"Many of my followers
write haiku equal to mine,
however in renku is the
bone marrow of this old man."


"Your following stanza
should suit the previous one as an expression
of the same heart's connection."


"Link verses the way
children play."


"Make renku
ride the Energy.
Get the timing wrong,
you ruin the rhythm."


"The physical form
first of all must be graceful
then a musical quality
makes a superior verse."

"As the years passed
by to half a century.
asleep I hovered
among morning clouds
and evening dusk,
awake I was astonished
at the voices of mountain
streams and wild birds."


“These flies sure enjoy
having an unexpected
sick person.”



Haiku of Humanity


Drunk on sake
woman wearing haori
puts in a sword


Night in spring
one hidden in mystery
temple corner


Wrapping rice cake
with one hands she tucks
hair behind ear


On Life's journey
plowing a small field
going and returning


Child of poverty
hulling rice, pauses to
look at the moon


Tone so clear
the Big Dipper resounds
her mallet


Huddling
under the futon, cold
horrible night


Jar cracks
with the ice at night
awakening



Basho Renku
Masterpieces

With her needle
in autumn she manages
to make ends meet
Daughter playing koto
reaches age seven


After the years
of grieving. . . finally
past eighteen
Day and night dreams of
Father in that battle


Now to this brothel
my body has been sold
Can I trust you
with a letter I wrote,
mirror polisher?


Only my face
by rice-seedling mud
is not soiled
Breastfeeding on my lap
what dreams do you see?



Single renku stanzas


Giving birth to
love in the world, she
adorns herself



Autumn wind
saying not a word
child in tears


Among women
one allowed to lead
them in chorus


Easing in
her slender forearm
for his pillow


Two death poems:


On a journey taken ill
dreams on withered fields
wander about

Clear cascade -
into the ripples fall
green pine needles




basho4humanity
@gmail.com




Plea for Affiliation

 

Plea For Affiliation

 

I pray for your help

in finding someone
individual, university,

or foundation - 
to take over my

3000 pages of material,   
to cooperate with me 

to edit the material,
to receive all royalties 

from sales, to spread

Basho’s wisdom worldwide,
and preserve for

future generations.


basho4humanity

@gmail.com

 



Article Search

Searched for ' ' :  260 articles found

Keyword:



101 - 150 of 260 : 1 2 3 4 5 6

Boncho, Basho, Kyorai Among Basho’s circle in Kyoto two men stand out: his beloved friend Kyorai and Boncho, a doctor married to Uko. In 1690, Basho wrote a letter to her: Recently Old Boncho and Kyorai ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-14

Tanka Equivilants Two renku stanzas both by Basho written in succession, a triplet of 17 sound-units then a couplet of 14, with continuity of theme between the two:  the form of a tanka -- although not a tanka. Th ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-15

Basho’s Zen Poetry Here are poems written while Basho was studying with a Zen priest, or about Zen monks, or about the practice of Zen meditation. (For prose and letters, see Article E-5 FRIENDS IN ZEN).& ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-16

Poetry in Basho Letters:  Poem: “an arrangement of words in verse, expressing facts, ideas, or emotions in a style more concentrated, imaginative, and powerful than that of ordinary speech.”&nb ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-17

Ride the Energy Basho told Doho:   Poetry should ride the Energy.  俳諧は気にのせてすべし. Haikai wa ki ni nosete subeshi. Ki is the Energy  of Oriental medicine and martial arts, the "life force" ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-18

Music and Song 15 Basho poems on music and song reveal a consciousness of profound effects on the brain. Let the music in his verses take you to another place. Daniel Levitin in This is your Brain on Music ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-19

Reply to Shiki The absence, in both Japan and the West, of significant knowledge of the humanity in Basho’s poetry and personality occurs because his renku, tanka, letters, and spoken word are almost unknown.& ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-20

Green Dragon's Ears The words for “green,” aoi or midori, appear more frequently than any other color in Basho poetry (although white is also frequent). The green of plants is more than a color to Basho; it i ...
▶ Poetry and Music   E-21

Faces In my continuing efforts to undermine the “Basho-image” of a impersonal, austere poet-saint, I offer you 30 of Basho's word-portraits of a most personal part of us: the face.   ...
▶ The Physical Body   F-01

Hands Hands  evolved to do work, and Basho paid profound attention to women's hands  at work. May his poems deepen your exerience of these products of millions of years of evolution. Here ...
▶ The Physical Body   F-02

Long Black Hair  Fascination with women’s hair enriches Japanese poetry from the most ancient, and Basho invested much attention into the beauty, grace, and sensuality of long black hair.  & ...
▶ The Physical Body   F-03

Sing the Body Electric   Walt Whitman sang of: "The womb, the teats, nipples, breast-milk, tears, laughter, weeping, love-looks, love-perturbations and risings"   Basho also writes of intimate body parts ...
▶ The Physical Body   F-04

Sickness and Health Basho portrays sickness in renku, haiku, and letters, and especially on his final journey as he approached death, he wrote about health and energy.   “How’s it going?” who&rs ...
▶ The Physical Body   F-05

Breath For inhalation Basho speaks of "fragrance" entering the nose, and for exhalation of voice accompanying the air. Since these 12 verses are all about breath, we can practice them as a form of Yoga, ...
▶ The Physical Body   F-06

Diagram of a Snore A cartoon by Basho?! He drew this nonsense in 1688 on the road with his buddy Tokoku going by the alias Mangiku, and sent it with a letter to Ensui.  Let's have fun with Basho!   ...
▶ The Physical Body   F-07

Fire for Life Basho never mentions the destructive fires other authors emphasize: he focuses on fire for warmth, light, cooking, incense, tea ceremony, cremation, and to guide spirits of the dead.   ...
▶ Food, Drink, and Fire   F-08

Rice to Eat Rice is the staple food of over half the world's population and provides 20% of the world’s diet: in Basho’s era, rice was boiled on a wood-burning stove for over one hour until soft, ...
▶ Food, Drink, and Fire   F-09

Besides Rice Here are lots of fish and lots of soups, sweet juicy fruits, miso,  carrots, daikon radish, seaweed, noodles, tofu, yams, and much else  Japanese eat along with their staple grain (see  ...
▶ Food, Drink, and Fire   F-10

Menu for Moon-Viewing Among the few actual “traces” we have of Basho is his Menu for Moon-Viewing (月見の献立、Tsukimi no Kondate), a list of foods served at a party he gave for his hometown friends and followers on ...
▶ Food, Drink, and Fire   F-11

High on Sake Basho records his perceptions, his feeling of being "high," on sake, and he portrays other people - women, old men, warriors, sages - under the influence. Let's have fun with Basho.    ...
▶ Food, Drink, and Fire   F-12

Ganja Basho From ancient times Japanese smoked cannabis for both medicine and recreation. Basho, in the 17th century, records the use of hemp for clothing fabric as well as shrine offerings. He left a few intrigu ...
▶ Food, Drink, and Fire   F-13

Deer Alive  Basho writes not about hunting, venison, or buckskin, but rather deer alive, moving, growing, calling, copulating. Deer combine soft, gentle qualities with strength and determination ...
▶ Animals in Basho   F-14

Cats and Dogs The lives of cats and dogs have forever been woven into human life. 18 Basho haiku and renku on cats and dogs reveal how people in Japan 330 years ago experienced these two mammals.   Charles J ...
▶ Animals in Basho   F-15

Horses on the Go  Basho in poetry often uses the horse to make an ordinary human subject more interesting. This is Basho’s art: to make his words stand out with interest.     On ...
▶ Animals in Basho   F-16

Other Mammals  Just as Basho was an anthropologist observing humanity, he also studied the nature and activity of our mammalian cousins, and we can learn much about humanity from his sketches of animals.  ...
▶ Animals in Basho   F-17

So Many Birds On his death bed Basho summarized his life in this way: "awake I was astonished at the voices of mountain streams and wild birds" and the 40 poems about birds in this article express that astonishment ...
▶ Animals in Basho   F-18

Life Underwater The sea produces some mighty strange creatures, and Basho takes us to visit them in their natural habitat alive or soon after death. (Sea animals as food appear in the article F-10 BESI ...
▶ Animals in Basho   F-19

Ode to a Crow If we think Basho is serious in the following, we would get a heavy feeling from this tirade – however realize that he is having fun with your mind, and wants you to be amused.     ...
▶ Animals in Basho   F-20

Daybreak to Sunrise  Arising to blow on embers / the wife of a bell-ringer.   Last night she banked the fire, covering coals with ashes to stay alive till dawn when she awakens them with her breath ...
▶ Space and Time   G-01

New Years New Year's Day/ sunlight on every field/is beloved.    Rice fields now barren expanses of mud and frost with row after row of cut-off stubble; Sun (Goddess) weak and cold yet She ...
▶ Space and Time   G-02

Mount Fuji Sun hits Her forehead / on peak of Mount Fuji. 日に額をうつ / 富士の 峰 上げ / Hi ni gaku o utsu / fuji no mine age. The Rising Sun has a female face, and She bumps Head on the stony peak.  Ou ...
▶ Space and Time   G-03

Water with Movement  "The mountains in silence nurture the spirit; The water with movement calms the emotions."   For a while raftsman/ at rest on the bank/ Pilgrim-robed/heart on a journey/becomes quiet. ...
▶ Space and Time   G-04

On a Journey Three whole years / on a journey from a journey / to a journey. Here are poems, prose passages, and letters about leaving home, traveling, or returning.   One of Basho's earliest renku ...
▶ Space and Time   G-05

Kyoto in Basho Basho tells the feeling of life in Kyoto, the ancient Capital of Japan, and home of many unconventional  people.    Though in Kyoto /longing for Kyoto /ho toto GI su.    K ...
▶ Space and Time   G-06

Iga Ninja – Three Prologues Basho’s birthplace, Iga (Mie-ken, east of Nara) was also home to Japan’s leading school of ninjitsu, the techniques of hiding, infiltration and attack by those mysterious undercover agents ...
▶ Space and Time   G-07

Basho in Saga Basho’s follower Kyorai, the second son of a doctor of Chinese medicine in Kyoto, had a cottage in Saga on the western outskirts. Basho, here for 16 days in 1691,  wrote this haibun: ...
▶ Space and Time   G-08

Zeze: Resting Place for his Spirit Zeze, in Otsu, just across the mountains east of Kyoto, was sacred to Basho: He wrote "The mountains in silence nurture the spirit;  the water with movement calms the emotions."   H ...
▶ Space and Time   G-09

Transcending Space, Time, and Life "Days and months are guests passing through Eternity, the years that go by also are travelers."   So Basho seeks to transcend the barriers of Time - and those of space and life.  &nbs ...
▶ Space and Time   G-10

Basho Letters of 1681 – 87 Basho left his hometown Iga  in 1672, moving to Edo  where he found a municipal job while he composed linked verse with other poets, wrote haiku, and gathered followers. In winter of 1680 Ba ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-11

Basho Letters of 1688 – 89 For 1688 we have letters to Sampu and Ensui, and for 1689 to Ranran, Ensui, Somu, and Sampu; the final of these gives an account of Basho on his world-famous journey to the Deep North.   Basho ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-12

Letters of 1690: His journey to the Deep North now past, Basho spends 1690 at leisure in Iga and around Kyoto, and in his leisure writes an amazing 44 letters still extant.          &nb ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-13

Letters of 1691 Basho’s sojourn in the Kansai area continues into this year with these friendly letters He began the year ( January 29, 1691, by the Western calender) in Otsu, but then returned to his hometo ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-14

Letters of 1692 Basho Letters to Kyokusui, Kyorai, Chigetsu, and Ensui, including the full text of the longest letter he wrote, on a scroll 3.46 meters (more than 11 feet) long   In the winter of 1691 Bas ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-15

Letters of Spring of 1693 1693 was a grim year for Basho; from the winter of 1692, he took his 33 year old nephew Toin sick with tuberculosis into his house to care for him until he died at the end of spring. Meanwhile, many o ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-16

Letters of Summer 1693 to Spring 1694 The death of his nephew left “traces” - or “scars” - on Basho's spirit. He mourned till late summer when he shut his door to all visitors and refused to go out for a month ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-17

Two Letters to Sora: The humanity in these letters traveling through places and human relations, the amazing array of details, make them masterpieces of letter-writing which should be familiar to anyone who knows Basho. ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-18

Letters in the rest of summer, 1694 The first two letters are both dated the same day as the astonishingly long letter to Sora in G-18.  Basho must have gotten much energy from being in Zeze on the shore of Lake Biwa. Much of ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-19

Basho's Final Letters: This autumn while Jirobei, with Shiko annd Izen, went to Edo and back,   Basho moved on to Iga where they rejoined with him to travel on to Nara and Osaka where Basho met his end. Letter ...
▶ Letters Year by Year   G-20

Wrapping Rice Cake (Haiku) Wrapping rice cake / with one hand she tucks / hair behind ear                 粽ゆう /片手にはさ /額髪 Chimaki yuu / katate ni hasamu / hitae-gami Basho ...
▶ Bilingual Basho 日本語も   H-01

Night in Spring (Haiku) At Hase Temple, a famous place of pilgrimage for women to pray to Kannon, the Goddess of Mercy, Basho wrote:    Night in spring -one hidden in mystery /temple corner.    Women ...
▶ Bilingual Basho 日本語も   H-02


101 - 150 of 260 : 1 2 3 4 5 6
Basho's thoughts on...
• Introduction to this site
• The Human Story:
• Praise for Women
• Love and Sex in Basho
• Children and Teens
• Humanity and Friendship
• On Translating Basho
• Basho Himself
• Poetry and Music
• The Physical Body
• Food, Drink, and Fire
• Animals in Basho
• Space and Time
• Letters Year by Year
• Bilingual Basho 日本語も
• 芭蕉について日本語の論文
• Basho Renku, 芭蕉連句
• Women in Basho
• BAMHAY (Basho Amazes Me! How About You?)
• New Articles


Matsuo Basho 1644~1694

The only substantial
collection in English
of Basho's renku, tanka,
letters and spoken word
along with his haiku, travel
journals, and essays.

The only poet in old-time
literature who paid attention with praise
to ordinary women, children, and teenagers
in hundreds of poems

Hundreds upon hundreds of Basho works
(mostly renku)about women, children,
teenagers, friendship, compassion, love.

These are resources we can use to better
understand ourselves and humanity.

Interesting and heartfelt
(not scholarly and boring)
for anyone concerned with
humanity.


“An astonishing range of
social subject matter and
compassionate intuition”


"The primordial power
of the feminine emanating
from Basho's poetry"


Hopeful, life-affirming
messages from one of
the greatest minds ever.

Through his letters,
we travel through his mind
and discover Basho's
gentleness and humanity.

I plead for your help in
finding a person or group
to take over my 3000 pages of Basho material,
to edit and improve the material, to receive 100%
of royalties, to spread Basho’s wisdom worldwide
and preserve for future generations.

Quotations from Basho Prose


The days and months are
guests passing through eternity.
The years that go by
also are travelers.



The mountains in silence
nurture the spirit;
the water with movement
calms the emotions.


All the more joyful,
all the more caring


Seek not the traces
of the ancients;
seek rather the
places they sought.



Basho Spoken Word


Only this, apply your heart
to what children do


"The attachment to Oldness
is the very worst disease
a poet can have."


“The skillful have a disease;
let a three-foot child
get the poem"


"Be sick and tired
of yesterday’s self."


"This is the path of a fresh
lively taste with aliveness
in both heart and words."
.

"In poetry is a realm
which cannot be taught.
You must pass through it
yourself. Some poets have made
no effort to pass through, merely
counting things and trying
to remember them.
There was no passing
through the things."


"In verses of other poets,
there is too much making
and the heart’s
immediacy is lost.
What is made from
the heart is good;
the product of words
shall not be preferred."


"We can live without poetry,
yet without harmonizing
with the world’s feeling
and passing not through
human feeling, a person
cannot be fulfilled. Also,
without good friends,
this would be difficult."


"Poetry benefits
from the realization
of ordinary words."


"Many of my followers
write haiku equal to mine,
however in renku is the
bone marrow of this old man."


"Your following stanza
should suit the previous one as an expression
of the same heart's connection."


"Link verses the way
children play."


"Make renku
ride the Energy.
Get the timing wrong,
you ruin the rhythm."


"The physical form
first of all must be graceful
then a musical quality
makes a superior verse."

"As the years passed
by to half a century.
asleep I hovered
among morning clouds
and evening dusk,
awake I was astonished
at the voices of mountain
streams and wild birds."


“These flies sure enjoy
having an unexpected
sick person.”



Haiku of Humanity


Drunk on sake
woman wearing haori
puts in a sword


Night in spring
one hidden in mystery
temple corner


Wrapping rice cake
with one hands she tucks
hair behind ear


On Life's journey
plowing a small field
going and returning


Child of poverty
hulling rice, pauses to
look at the moon


Tone so clear
the Big Dipper resounds
her mallet


Huddling
under the futon, cold
horrible night


Jar cracks
with the ice at night
awakening



Basho Renku
Masterpieces

With her needle
in autumn she manages
to make ends meet
Daughter playing koto
reaches age seven


After the years
of grieving. . . finally
past eighteen
Day and night dreams of
Father in that battle


Now to this brothel
my body has been sold
Can I trust you
with a letter I wrote,
mirror polisher?


Only my face
by rice-seedling mud
is not soiled
Breastfeeding on my lap
what dreams do you see?



Single renku stanzas


Giving birth to
love in the world, she
adorns herself



Autumn wind
saying not a word
child in tears


Among women
one allowed to lead
them in chorus


Easing in
her slender forearm
for his pillow


Two death poems:


On a journey taken ill
dreams on withered fields
wander about

Clear cascade -
into the ripples fall
green pine needles




basho4humanity
@gmail.com




Plea for Affiliation

 

Plea For Affiliation

 

I pray for your help

in finding someone
individual, university,

or foundation - 
to take over my

3000 pages of material,   
to cooperate with me 

to edit the material,
to receive all royalties 

from sales, to spread

Basho’s wisdom worldwide,
and preserve for

future generations.


basho4humanity

@gmail.com