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

January 1, 2012

Japanese Literature: New year's haiku

New Year's haiku by Issa

my happiness 
just about average 
at my New Year 

medetasa mo | chuu gurai nari | oraga haru 

Planting my stick
in the quagmire -
the first sun of the year

nukarumi e | tsue tsupatte | hatsuhi kana

New Year's Day
my hovel
the same as ever

ganjitsu mo | tachi no manma no | kuzu-ya kana

even my shadow
is safe and sound
this first morning of spring

kageboshi mo | mame sokusai de | kesa no haru

New Year's haiku by Basho

has spring already come?
I feel wealthy this New Year
with five sho of old rice

haru tatsu ya | shin-nen furuki | kome go-shoo

New Year's Day
I feel lonely just like
an autumn evening

ganjitsu ya | omoeba sabishi | aki no kure

New Year's haiku by Shiki

New Year's Day
nothing good or bad -
just human beings

ganjitsu wa | ze mo hi mo nakute | shujoo nari

New Year's haiku by Shigyoku 

New Year's Day
whosoever face we see
it is carefree

ganjitsu ya | taga kao mite mo | nen no naki

Cited - with corrections - from R.H. Blyth, Haiku Vol. 2, Spring. The first Issa haiku is my own translation.