How is that for mixing metaphors? As I was writing one of a neverending stream of plant profiles for my website, I found the National Arboretum site…which led me to a page on the art of Kusamono. That in turn made me remember that I meant to give Joanne a link on “Kigo” because she is a crafter of Haiku.
“Kigo (季語, “season word”?) (plural kigo) is a word or phrase associated with a particular season, used in Japanese poetry.” ~Wikipedia
I wonder if we often incorporate such ideas into our gardens without even thinking much about it? The Japanese seem to have a knack for distilling a matter to its essence, and perhaps it is this love of season that they have artfully given to their bonsai work and poetry.
We are now in late summer, which is an emotional turning point in our garden year. you hear it everywhere in gardener’s conversations, but also in cultural vestiges of our old agricultural and more nature based consciousness.
What might our Kigo be in our late summer gardens right now? Mine has birds flocking, black-eyed Susans, and tall grasses with plumes of bloom. End of summer (natsu no hate) is a trug full of ripe tomatoes and peppers. A clothesline of freshly washed linens and garments gathering in the welcome draughts of summer afternoon breezes held in fragrant suspension, released fresh upon the beds in the rest of cooler nights. It is the final alfalfa fields mowing, and the tall stalks of corn with their full ears swelling at their sides. It is exhausted summer flowers gone seedy, and lazy cats taking their naps (although truthfully cats will do that almost anytime). It is empty lawn chairs as I find myself stirred to resume the rhythms of work while torn to reside in the chair for the last of summer’s freedom and warm rays.
What does your Kigo of late summer look/feel/sound like? Some haiku summer ‘Kigo’