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triveni spotlight: 21st October 2023

triveni spotlight A FEATURE EVERY ALTERNATE DAY! hosts: Kala Ramesh and Vidya Shankar GUEST EDITOR: Keiko Izawa 21st October 2023


hi no ataru ishi ni sawareba tsumetasayo


stone in the sun

the coldness

when I touch it


Shiki Masaoka (1867 – 1902)

coldness: winter kigo


During this month, I’d like to introduce contemporary Japanese haiku, including kigo, which are referred to as “yūki haiku(有季俳句)”. In yūki haiku, toriawase (matching kigo and the remaining phrases) is the key point, not to mention its creativity and originality. In my view, Japanese haiku are generally simple compared to English (language) haiku, but the subtle sensibility is embedded within as the synergies with the power of kigo. I hope you enjoy karumi (lightness) blended with seasonality in these haiku.

Keiko Izawa

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Thank you for being our next guest editor Keiko Izawa You are bringing something fresh and this is going to be a treat for all our members. _()_

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3 Comments


lakshmi iyer
lakshmi iyer
Oct 21, 2023

A beautiful way of speaking of the various relationships we have, even when you shower your warmth they remain 'cold as the stone', being unemotional. L 2 is a good pivot here. Thanks Keiko.

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Keiko Izawa
Keiko Izawa
Oct 21, 2023
Replying to

Thank you, Lakshmi. I so appreciate various comments like yours here.

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Keiko Izawa
Keiko Izawa
Oct 20, 2023

In summer, when you touch a stone in the sun, it may be so hot that it would burn your hand; but in winter, it remains cold no matter how much the sun shines on it. I can imagine how surprised he was at the unexpected coldness when he touched it for warmth. Shiki captured this moment which many of us might neglect.


Shiki is well known for his shasei(objective sketching) style poems, which he first introduced in haikai. His such innovative haiku were often criticized by haijin of those days.

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