Sunday, July 07, 2013

Fireweed and bee spotted today!

Strong mid-day wood's-edge light along the road at the south end of the Hymas Woods Nature Preserve shows off the intricate structure of the white parts of the flower. A bee bumbling here and there. There is a tiny red spot below the bee, which seems to be part of the bee. I have seen the yellow pollen baskets on other bees, but could this be a red one? Fireweed in bloom always makes me happy. since I first saw and identified it here just a few years ago. Looking it up, I find that in many parts of the English-speaking world, it is known as willowherb; this sounds very poetic, I think.
There were a few fireworks in the early evening. The sad thing is that the dog tried to dig out again when it got dark. It reminds me of a nervous breakdown, one that continues after the initial manifestation. We are all pretty upset about it.

This lovely flower seems to require Song of the Yodo as the poem for tonight. The Yodo is a river. This  SONG is the final poem (part of a very short section of poems that are not haiku) in the NEW book, Collected Haiku of Yosa Buson, translated by W. S. Merwin & Takako Lento. (It is on page 245.) I have been waiting a long time to be able to learn something more about Buson's haiku. He is particularly interesting to me because of his renown as a painter as well as a giant of haiku poetry. The procedure of this poem reminds me of "linking by scent (or emotion)" a method Basho discussed for the creation of renku poetry, which is created by small groups of people working together. Scent linking implies a connection between verses by agreement in mood or emotion rather than by association of specific things or ideas. Naniwa was later known as the city of Osaka.


A plum flower floats on the stream of Spring
the Uji flows down south and meets the Yodo
do not untie the sash of golden brocade
if you do the swift current will take the boat like lightning


The Uji water meets the Yodo water
they come together to become one body
I wish to sleep with you on the boat
and become a familiar resident of Naniwa


You are a plum flower floating on the water
floating down the river swiftly you leave
I am a weeping willow on the river's edge
my shadow is deep in the water
I cannot come with you

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