spring rain

by Buson

English version by Gabriel Rosenstock
Original Language Japanese

spring rain --
pond and river
are one

-- from The Moon Over Tagoto: Selected Haiku of Buson, Translated by Gabriel Rosenstock / Translated by John McDonald

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Commentary by Ivan M. Granger

I actually woke up to a brilliant, sunny day here in Colorado, but this poem still spoke to me. I think it reminds me of my childhood in rainy Oregon. Even though I have lived in sun-filled Colorado for years, in some secluded corner of my mind the rain still drums down. I carry it with me, a place of comforting shadows and quiet inturning, where everything has depth but not distinction.

This haiku by Buson reminds me of that sense-- A spring shower, soft, then heavy, then light again. We hunch our shoulders against it, find shelter beneath the branch of a tree. We grow quiet and peer out through the curtain of rainfall to see a world bathed in shifting gray and deep green and milky whites. The pond nearby is barely visible in the downpour. The stream that runs by is shushed by the all-encompassing sound of the falling rain. Water from the pond, water flowing through the stream, water endlessly descending from heaven and running in rivulets everywhere, connecting it all. A unity that drenches us and invites us in.

Whether you have sun or rain, I hope you have a chance to be drenched in this beautiful day!

Recommended Books: Buson

Zen Poetry: Let the Spring Breeze Enter Haiku Enlightenment: New Expanded Edition The Poetry of Zen: (Shambhala Library) The Moon Over Tagoto: Selected Haiku of Buson The Poetry of Impermanence, Mindfulness, and Joy

spring rain