well! let's go
snow-viewing till
we tumble!

—Matsuo Basho (1644 - 1694)

This poem shows him in a humorous, childlike mood not uncommon for the founder of what we call "haiku" today.

from William J. Higginson with Penny Harter, _The Haiku Handbook: How to Write, Share, and Teach Haiku_, published by Kodansha International. Copyright © 1985
William J. Higginson; used by permission of the translator.

(Handbook, p. 11)

About the author: Basho (1644-1694) wrote and taught linked poetry to scores of disciples from Osaka and Kyoto north to the mountains of Dewa.

Responses to the haiku for 2 February 2001 by Matsuo Basho (1644 - 1694)

    William J. Higginson
    2003-10-23 22:03:02

    One of Bashô's most famous poems, indisputably his. Similarly:

    Buddy, make a fire
    and I'll show you something nice:
    a great snowball!

    Each attested in 3 contemporary sources, 1 of which is his own haibun.

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2003-10-23 23:25:48

    absolutes in life:
    the son has risen
    one day we'll die


    easily we're swayed:
    by what we see in print
    is that an ink stain


    weighs on her mind -
    life's stream can wash it away
    hope is not gone

    john tiong chunghoo (bagiruang at yahoo dot com)
    2004-02-12 08:38:27

    the boy sings
    to a world map

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2004-05-06 04:02:03

    i, yet, ponder this having being written by basho.
    oh well, perhaps something was lost in translation.

    skipping a stone,
    pass the rainbow,
    the glassy water shatters!