' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ALTERNATIVE BASHOS(an haiku or two for my old pal AL)
With profuse apologies to Mr. Basho who in the Spring of maybe 1681/82 gave us this famous verse.
FURU IKE YA / KAWAZU TOBIKOMU / MIZU NO OTO
A FROG JUMPS INTO
THE SOUND OF WATER
(this translation by Jane Riechhold)
They efforts are written in sharefu or witty style and I suppose I wrote them as an negai no ito('wish on a string') for me old pal Al. These are the special five-coloured threads of paper that are hung from bamboo trees during the Tanabata('Star Festival') . These are my word versions of such celebratory knickknacks and so I tie them to the trees in his mind. I always like the sound the phrase 'for my old pal Al' and always have fun in dedicating something to him.
The translation of this famous poem always begins with 'old pond' and so...so do I. The syllable count not being the important aspect here and anyway there is a Japanese rule that encourages the breaking away from the set number of syllables to indicate agitation or emotion. I can only say I was agitated with emotion or emotions.
So it was I undertook to stray not just from the strict syllable count but to imagine alternative goings on at the old pond...keeping the old frog in every now and then or ditching him(and in one extreme case...killing him) for contrast or company.
I have also played around with the sound of sound and and the sounds of silence.
I have communed bashfully with Basho and he has forgiven me everything...he only said just don't do it again! So, hopefully, if even he can forgive me then surely you too can. Enjoy them if you can. If not come and throw a brick through my window for such Basho blasphemy!
STARRING IN YOUR OWN EDWARD HOPPER
drops fag in her martini
sound of loneliness.
BASHO MISSES THE MOMENT
nothing but the sound of the
sound of silence.
dead frog in car's tyre track
sounds of love making.
HOT SUMMER NIGHT
skinny-dippers disturb frog
moonlight on nipples
THE SOUND OF SILENCE
the fallen cherry blossom
making not a sound
SHARE AND SHARE ALIKE
silent frog watches children
dive into laughter
sound of stone thrown in & then
silence of ripples.
COME AND GONE
only the sound of memories
sound of frog jumping into
IT'S A POET THING!
moon falls in...only a poet
hears moonlight shouting.
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
two neat piles of clothes...on edge
not a frog in sight...so quiet
FOR EVERY SEASON
two blondes mother and daughter
sound of times gone by.
BASHO'S BIRTHDAY BASH!
full to the brim with frogs...frogs!
all chanting haiku.
GOING TOO FAR TOO FAST
cocky boy...nervous girl...then
sound of kisses...sLAP!
THE WIDOWER'S RETURN
tie him to this pond...first kiss
first slap...frog's laughter.
fat flatulent monk farting
sound of frog's laughing.
OLD MONK DREAMS OF WRITING FAMOUS HAIKU
an old monk hard of hearing
can't think what to write.
These of course are my very loose playful translations...done...for...fun!
frog & water
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This sequence has now turned itself into a little booklet called OLD POND REVISITED. Haiku by moi and Haiga by Jan.
Dónall Dempsey's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ' ALTERNATIVE BASHOS(an haiku or two for my old pal AL) by Dónall Dempsey )
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