Izumi Shikibu
Japan (974? - 1034?) Timeline
Buddhist : Zen / Chan

Poems by Izumi Shikibu
Books - Links

Izumi Shikibu is one of the towering figures of Japanese literature. She lived in Kyoto and was an official companion to the empress. She married young, but scandalized the court by abandoning her husband to become the lover of one of the empress's sons. When the prince died a few years later, she took a series of other lovers before eventually marrying for a second time.

She was a social rebel, but willing to be fully engaged in her life. And, like her personal life, Shikibu's poetry mixes elements of eros with the deep awareness that comes from Buddhist meditative practice.

Poems by Izumi Shikibu

Recommended Books: Izumi Shikibu

Women in Praise of the Sacred: 43 Centuries of Spiritual Poetry by Women The Enlightened Heart: An Anthology of Sacred Poetry

Related Links

The Diary of Izumi Shikibu

Text from the diary of Izumi Shikibu, including many of her poems.
Izumi Shikibu