Tag Archives: spring

Memories of Cherry Blossoms

I still hold the simple memories of cherry blossoms heralding change and hope dearly in my heart.There is so much written about the beauty and profoundness of cherry blossoms. And yet, my childhood memories of them are quite simple.

I grew up in Mimasaka, a small town in Okayama prefecture. There, like in everywhere else, spring … Read the rest

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Japanese Festival of Dolls (Hina-Matsuri)

Japanese Festival of Dolls 2019

In Japan, one of the sure signs of the arrival of spring is Hina-Matsuri, the Festival of Dolls.

Japanese have celebrated Hina-Matsuri since at least the 8th-century Heian period. During this time Japan experienced a great flourishing in culture. In Heian, playing … Read the rest

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Place Where There Are No Strangers

The place where there are no strangers is not a place at all; it is in our hearts. To me, the pretty cherry blossoms show the way how.under cherry blossoms’ shade
even those whom we don’t know
are not strangers

                               – Issa Kobayashi (1819)

When we can share feelings with others, they are no longer strangers. If we have empathy, “others” become “we”. Where there can never … Read the rest

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Irises, Yomogi and Traditions of May

The deeply-hued, passionate ayame irises are an unmistakable sign of spring and early summer. Their vivid color and bold beauty have inspired poets, artists and kimono makers for generations.

It’s early May. The Japanese countryside is blanketed with some of the most beloved symbols of Japanese spring: passionate irises and yomogi, the Japanese “wonder herb”.

The love affair with irises and yomogi runs deep in Japan’s national psyche, … Read the rest

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Irises and the Moment

Iris-garden-in-edo

In spring irises have been appreciated in Japan for a very long time.

Their vivid color and bold beauty have inspired fashion designers and kimono makers for generations.

The picture above is of a block print by the great Utagawa … Read the rest

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