The Earth Afloat: Anthology of Contemporary Japanese Haiku

Kôko Katô, Editor
Translated by Kôko Katô & David Burleigh

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Kôko Katô, Editor. The Earth Afloat: Anthology of Contemporary Japanese Haiku.

Translations and commentary by Kôko Katô and David Burleigh. Tokyo: Kadokawa Shoten Press, 2021. ISBN: 978-4-04-884390-4


Though many of the poets are of an age with Kôko Katô herself, and poets of an aging society, their way of thinking is durable. This book, then, may be a useful tool to help the reader appreciate the range and depth of the haiku poet's customary view — that human beings are a part of nature — and how this attitude informs their way of life. The true spirit of haiku lies within that. I would wish to say.

It is my hope that this book may become a good friend to those living overseas particularly, some of whom may venture to write haiku of their own. I would like to thank Mr. David Burlleigh for his help and support with the translations and compilation of this volume.

—Sonô Uchida, First President
   Haiku International Associatio


The Earth Afloat: Anthology of Contemporary Japanese Haiku
ISBN: 978-4-04-884390-4

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sample haiku:

Accustomed to solitude
and self-hatred . . .
love of winter roses

     Baba Shunkichi


Field of wild grasses . . .
the children playing
with a single rope

     Hashimoto Eiji

Replacing
a little of the straw —
peony buds

     Ogasawara Kazuo

sample haiku:

Soaking up the rain
the corspse of a bee
swollen up

     Imai Sei


I would leave this child
riding lightly on my shoulders
in care of the moon

     Ishi Kanta

Handsaw heated up
after cutting the wood —
autumn evening


     Miyata Masakazu

Katô Kôkô

Born in Kyoto in 1931. Graduated Nagoya First Girls' School. Graduated from Aichi Prefectural Women's College. Graduated in English literature from Dôshisha University. Completed Doctor Course in Japanese literature at Chûkyô University, specializing in the Edo period (1600-1864). Doctor of Literature. Presently teaching at Nagayo Junior College. President of the Kô Poetry Association. Editor and publisher of Kô haiku and essay magazine in Japanese and English. Serves on the Board of Management of the Museum of Haiku Literature, and as a Director of the Haiku International Association and the Modern Anglo-American Poetry Association. Member of the Japan PEN Club, and the Japan Writers' Association.

David Burleigh

Born in Northern Ireland in 1950. Graduated in Social Administration from the University of Ulster and did research in English literature at the University of Sussex. Presently Associate Professor at Ferris University. He serves on the Committee of the International Association for the Study of Irish Literature (Japan Branch), and belongs to the Working Group for the Masaoka Shiki International Haiku Awards. Member of the Haiku International Association, and the Japan Comparative Literature Association.