master basho

Frank Tassone invites us to write haibuns on Basho/Shakespeare at dVerse Poets.


Matsuo Basho lived simply and walked lightly on the island of Japan. His tiny home was in the village of Edo. One spring day, Basho felt restless and decided to travel by foot across the country. He went in search of cherry blossoms. For his journey, Basho wore a paper hat, black robe, and woven grass sandals. He carried his ink stone and writing paper wrapped in a cloth.

He followed the winding river, sat in a cool waterfall cave, and visited a thousand-yr.-old twin pine. Eventually, he came to an orchard of blossoming cherry trees! A farmer loaned him a horse to ride through a vast, grassy field. He took baths in hot springs and swam in the sea. He ate whatever he found or was given along the way: vegetables, wild rice, noodles, fish.

In the mountains, Basho joined friends for a full moon party. Drinking tea and rice wine, they composed poems together about the night sky. Basho often stopped in his travels to quietly listen and observe. He watched the fog, heard grasshoppers, touched an iris, and tasted rain. Focusing on the moment made Matsuo a haiku master.


do not bash basho


wikipedia image

named himself “banana tree”

writer of frog pond











Information on Basho’s life taken from a lovely children’s book, Grass Sandals, by Dawnine Spivak with beautiful illustrations by Demi.


5 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. rothpoetry
    May 04, 2020 @ 21:01:11

    Very nicely done Lynn! Love the picture of the frog! “Who’s tripping over my bridge!!” Love it.


  2. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Apr 28, 2020 @ 15:02:28

    Indeed.. when you take the time to observe you become a poet


  3. memadtwo
    Apr 28, 2020 @ 14:46:42

    Paying attention was his key to opening the images. (K)


  4. Frank J. Tassone
    Apr 28, 2020 @ 11:49:18

    A delightful account of the life and times of the haiku master. Nicely done!


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