Today’s Haiku (January 10, 2011)

母のこゑ足して七草揃ひけり   あざ蓉子

haha no koe tashite nanakusa soroikeri

adding mother’s voice

New Year’s seven herbs


Yoko Aza

from “Gendai Haiku Hyakunin Nijukku” (“Modern Haiku: 20 Haiku per100 Poets”), edited by Kazuo Ibaraki, Kiyoko Uda, Nenten Tsubouchi, Kazuko Nishimura, You-shorin, Nagano, 2004

5 responses to “Today’s Haiku (January 10, 2011)

  1. Merrill Ann Gonzales

    Hi, Fay, Now here’s a haiku that brings all sorts of associations to those who know what the seven herbs are and what each of them stands for. It would be interesting if you could post the seven herbs and a word or two about each one…but then that may be too much. I do get the flavor of it as in the Judo-Christian history there is the Exodus and Passover where each of the foods means something in the Passover feast. Of course most of it is lost to the Christian community who conceive of the Passover Feast in different terms. So that little phrase holds so much meaning… but to us just a hint of the aroma … Many thanks.

  2. Those are names of ‘nanakusa’ (seven herbs): hotokenoza (henbit); seri (dropwort, similar to watercress); baby daikon; hakobe (chickweed); nazuna (Shepard’s purse); suzuna (turnip); and gogyo (cudweed).
    Traditionally, people make ‘rice porridge’ with these herbs (plants, rather?).

  3. Merrill Ann Gonzales

    Thanks, Fay… That’s an interesting list.

    • Merrill Ann: I have no idea how these are selected… I bet there is a meaning and history behind, but I do not know… :<

  4. Merrill Ann Gonzales

    Hi, Fay, That’s why I thought the list was so interesting… As I read and come across information sometimes it links up to a list like this that seems to be kept as a cultural memory of some sort…and sometimes that leads to a deeper understanding of a people..and their journey. One of the reasons your blog is really terrific. It keeps us wondering…

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