Introduction

The defining feature of the Haiku is that it suggests rather than defines its meaning. In few words — sometimes conforming to a syllable count, sometimes not — the Haiku encourages the formation of images, and the reader takes their own meaning. Just as in meditation, we achieve a sense of our own minds without having it shown to us.

Because of their simplicity, of their serenity, and their wonderful way with images, we are going to be showcasing one Haiku every Monday… your weekly serene smile.

old pond -
a frog jumps
sound of water

A Few Words on Our Haiku

We have chosen for our first Haiku an iconic piece from the ancient master of the art, Basho. Born outside Kyoto in 1644, Basho grew to fame as a scribe and a poet, a master of plain language and direct phrasing, and produced some wonderful and lasting Haikus.

Today’s is one of our favourites — so much so, that we asked Julia Allum (the artist who created the botanical illustrations for the Anamaya app) to create an image of the Haiku to serve as the motif for the series.

In Haiku iconology, the frog is a symbol of spring — for lovely and obvious reasons! — so we might be thought premature for releasing it in February. However, we believe the new and the fresh blossoms from meditation at any time…