Haiku # 378

Telle la main droite
d’une sage-femme —
la feuille d’érable en automne

— Samboku

Il faut avoir vu le rouge sanglant des érables japonais en automne pour apprécier pleinement ce magnifique haiku, récompensé en 1672 par Matsuo Basho dans un concours de renga. De Samboku, il ne reste que cet unique poème.

— Haiku, Anthologie du poème court japonais, traduit par Corinne Atlan et Zéno Bianu

Seul le haiku reste —
poète enfui
dans les herbes d’automne

Tanka # 73

The silent echo
of their hooves —
spring clouds
like white horsemen
rolling down the hills


Teach me
how to live again,
by the cemeteries
in ignorant bliss
a child playing.

Remember how, as kids, we used to go play by the cemeteries where you’re now buried? We never thought then that either of us could lay in that place. And we went there often, with mom to pray in that small church by the cemeteries, to gather nuts from under the nearby trees in late summer. We went there when we got older, with friends, late at night, starting bonfires and drinking beer. We went there to have picnics and swim up the river, past the cemeteries and under the sycamores. How do I reconcile myself with the fact that you’re now there, forever, in that place that is so intimately entwined with the images of our childhood? How do I reconcile myself with life again knowing that I’m forever deprived from your presence? How, Sarah, how?