Issa haikus

In this area you’ll find selected examples of Issas Haiku poetry. An easy-to-access option to take a break from our reasoning monkey mind.

Just take a look on the three lines, let them sink in, the scene will emerge in your heart…

Let it play around in your mind, rest with it, watch it dissolve…

flitting to the oil lamp
of the pissing place…
powdery snow
1821
.小便所の油火にちる粉雪哉
shôbenjo no abura-bi ni chiru kona yuki kana

lovers parting–
looking back at her house
until only mist

1794

.きぬぎぬやかすむ迄見る妹が家
kinu-ginu ya kasumu made miru imo ga ie

seeing off
the departing geese…
little pines
1809
.雁立つた跡を見に行小松哉
kari tatta ato wo mi ni yuku ko matsu kana
I call Mr. Toad
“Lucky” too…
peony
1818
.蟇どのも福と呼るるぼたん哉
hiki dono mo fuku to yobaruru botan kana
“Lucky” (Fuku) is a common pet name for toads. Issa implies that he and the toad share the good fortune of enjoying the blooming peony.
New Year’s Day–
a one-penny kite, too
in Edo’s sky
1810
.朔日や一文凧も江戸の空
tsuitachi ya ichi mon-dako mo edo no sora
The sky and wind are free for all to enjoy. Expensive kites soar in the New Year’s sky, but so does a one-penny kite–just as happily.
going outside the fence
to fart…
a cold night
1816
.垣外へ屁を捨に出る夜寒哉
kaki soto e he wo sute ni deru yozamu kana