The picture is from a few weeks ago and thus (major sin in Japan) is no longer really seasonal, but Atsushi and I used to see the irises in bloom every June at the Meiji Shrine, and he was sweet enough to send me a few shots from when he went. Note the woman holding photographic equipment in the background, which is a component of just about every natural scene nowadays:
I always forget my camera when I go to the park or gardens, so I don’t have any snaps of my own from New York to post; however, it occurs to me that I haven’t posted any poems in a good, long while.
The one that first came to mind, it turns out, I’d written about a few summers ago. Darn.
Luckily, there are more where that came from. It’s been something of a hot summer, so even though this isn’t one of Saigyo’s most arresting poems, it seems appropriate:
yoraretsuru / nomosenokusano / kagerohite / suzushikukumoru / yuudachinosora
over the expanse of field
is receiving shade
as clouds slide coolly over
the sky while dusk approaches
The Priest Saigyo
Saigyo seems to sense the grass’s own relief as the glaring sun begins to set and clouds roll in to block its light.