Names in this site follow the Japanese custom of family name first.

August 6, 2011

Haiku Stones: Miidera, Otsu (Basho)

tempted to knock the gate
of the Temple of the Three August Wells
today's moon

Miidera no | mon tatakabaya | kyo no tsuki

Miidera, the "Temple of the Three August Wells," officially called Onjoji, is a major Tendai temple at the shore of Lake Biwa. Basho loved this area and often stayed here for a longer time - and he was eventually buried in Gichuji Temple not far from the Lake. At the time he wrote this haiku he was recuperating in the Genjuan hut from his long trip to the far North. The appearance of the moon means that the season is autumn.

[Basho haiku stone in Onjoji Temple. Photo Ad Blankestijn]

The haiku stone, on the picture above, stands in the grounds of Onjoji, a 10 min walk from Miidera St on the Keihan Ishiyama-Sakamoto line. The Kannon Hall of Miidera, on a hill above the lake, is part of the Kannon Pilgrimage tour of the Kansai.