Winter Haiku: a Cold, Rainy Night

night, and once again as i wait for you cold wind turns into rain

night, and once again
as i wait for you
cold wind turns into rain

– Masaoka Shiki (1867 – 1902)

Masaoka Shiki is one of the four Japanese great masters of haiku (along with Basho, Buson, and Issa.)

He is credited with modernizing Japan’s traditional verse forms and for bringing realism into haiku.

Shiki believed in concise representation of reality — without personal interpretations and bias.

Living Sketches

Shiki was an advocate of a technique called sha-sei which loosely translates to “living sketches.” Here is an example of Shiki’s style:

lying sick in bed
i thought i felt
dew drops falling

(byōshō no | ware ni tsuyu chiru | omoi ari)

Shiki suffered from TB most of his life and was often bedridden. He had many disciples who loved him and adored his work. Below are scribble a friend and I made while talking about Shiki.

lying sick in bed i thought i felt dew drops falling (p 1 of 3)
lying sick in bed i thought i felt dew drops falling (p 2 of 3)lying sick in bed i thought i felt dew drops falling (p 3 of 3)
WAWAZA Staff Writers

WAWAZA Staff Writers

This post was written by collaboration and contributions of the staff at WAWAZA Japanese Traditional Beauty and Wellness based in Miyazaki, Japan.
WAWAZA Staff Writers

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WAWAZA Staff Writers

About WAWAZA Staff Writers

This post was written by collaboration and contributions of the staff at WAWAZA Japanese Traditional Beauty and Wellness based in Miyazaki, Japan.
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