Matsuo Basho- The Inspiration

Several years ago in a Japan very dissimilar to the one we know today Matsuo Basho, a famed haiku poet, set off on a long dangerous journey of northern Japan. He tells us the story of this journey in a book entitled Oku no Hosomichi, The Narrow Road to the Deep North.

This humble tome is written in a form called haibun, a form which along with haiku Basho was the master. The haibun generally consists of one or more highly descriptive paragraphs setting the stage for a haiku poem. Yes, it really is that simple. I figure it will take me the rest of my life to master.

While most people in this day and age are unwilling or unable to make a 2,500 kilometre journey on foot, it is still possible to explore the subtle and very often profound poetry of life just by being mindful of the world around us.