Feb 13, 2021

the beautiful cry of a pheasant

i am visiting putah creek 

where i left some of my son’s ashes 

when the beautiful cry of a pheasant 

rips through the air 

cutting me like a fresh sorrow 

every new day is like a year of suffering


let us span the sacramento river 

with a bridge 

that we make out of joy and kindness 

every person that ever crosses this bridge 

will be blessed


―from Matsuo Basho:

“The journey itself is my home.”

“This autumn-

why am I growing old?

bird disappearing among clouds.”

“Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise; seek what they sought.”

“Winter solitude-

in a world of one colour

the sound of the wind.”

“When composing a verse let there not be a hair's breath separating your mind from what you write; composition of a poem must be done in an instant, like a woodcutter felling a huge tree or a swordsman leaping at a dangerous enemy.”

Matsuo Bashō 


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VIA NEGATIVA, purveyors of fine poetry since 2003


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