Archives for posts with tag: frogs

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FROG HAIKU
by Matsuo Basho
Translated by Nobuyuki Yuasa

Breaking the silence
Of an ancient pond,
A frog jumped into water —
A deep resonance

ART: “Frog,” watercolor by Frits Ahlefeldt.

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One Hundred Frogs: From Renga to Haiku to English

by Hiroaki Sato

BOOK DESCRIPTION:  Poet Ezra Pound described the haiku as “an intellectual and emotional complex in an instant of time.” It is the haiku’s sense of immediacy and its precision that continue to appeal to poets and poetry lovers today. In One Hundred Frogs, author Hiroaki Sato  discusses the haiku as well as the often ignored renga or linked-verse form, out of which the haiku grew. One Hundred Frogs features many renowned Japanese poets, most notably Matsuo Basho, in the translated poetry that illustrates the text. To reveal the myriad choices open to translators of renga and haiku, the author provides an in-depth analysis of one of Japan’s most famous haiku, Basho’s poem about a frog in a pond, and presents a compilation of over one hundred translations and variations of the poem.

Find One Hundred Frogs by Hiroaki Sato at Amazon.com.

Calligraphy and animation by Ehsan Akbari.

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The Frog Prince (excerpts)
by Stevie Smith

I am a frog
I live under a spell
I live at the bottom
Of a green well

I am happy, I like the life,
Can swim for many a mile
(When I have hopped to the river)
And am forever agile.

But always when I think these thoughts
As I sit in my well
Another thought comes to me and says:
It is part of the spell

To be happy
To work up contentment
To make much of being a frog
To fear disenchantment

Says, It will be heavenly
To be se free,
Cries Heavenly the girl who disenchants
And the royal times, heavenly,
And I think it will be.

Come then, royal girl and royal times,
Come quickly,
I can be happy until you come
But I cannot be heavenly,
Only disenchanted people
Can be heavenly.