Thursday, January 5, 2012

Basho Revisited, rather than oysters

As we all know oysters are considered an aphrodisiac and are used by young lovers to arouse the sexual drive. In Basho's time oysters were also seen as an aphrodisiac and was used commonly by youngsters who fell in love.
Basho's next haiku he wrote in the Spring of 1687 when he was 43 years of age. For his time he wasn't a young man anymore, not old, but the common age of dying was around 50. He didn't need to use oysters to become aroused so he wrote:

kaki yori wa    nori wo ba oi no    uri mo se de

rather than oysters
it's dried seaweed one should sell
when one is old

Basho has no need for oysters because he is of age, but to stay healthy he ate dried seaweed. On the other side this haiku was written in Spring and that's the season in which nature is again coming to life, so this haiku could be a nice verse to write about Spring. The oysters are Spring item and the dried seaweed could refer to Winter. The truth is in the middle. I prefer the meaning of the aphrodisiac.

young lovers
under the blooming Cherry trees
eating oysters

I may not say that this haiku is a good one, because I can't say that of myself, but ... it's in the same tone and sense as Basho's haiku is.
In this haiku ... I surely have touched the Spirit of Basho.


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