Basho, Robert Aitken and Haiku 2

This is part of a short series of posts featuring my reading of Aitken’s book on Basho* (R. Aitken, Zen Wave, Washington DC, 1978) which I love – yes, all three of them. That means quotes from Robert Aitken and from Basho may be interspersed with thoughts of my own as they pop up upon reading and re-reading.

In chapter 6 Aitken and Basho speak of a vastness under the full moon that is such that all words like ‘holy’are wholly inadequate. But without many words they also speak of the maturing of one’s inner freedom, in the form of everyday, with companion:

Our first vow is to save all beings, and finding a modest channel to fulfill that vow in the garden of the community is a natural movement. Labelling it as compassionate is – confining it.

The autumn moon

I walked round the pond

all night long

You be Bosatsu

I’ll be the taxi driver

driving you home (Gary Snyder)


~ by Barbara S on April 24, 2022.

2 Responses to “Basho, Robert Aitken and Haiku 2”

  1. I haven’t read Zen Wave yet. This series is definitely making me interested in picking it up. Thanks!

    • if you can, Mark, I’d be interested to hear how you read it – I find it really deeply moving to chew on some of the riddles Aitken presents. Best -,

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: