Tuesday, June 19, 2012

News at Eleven: Seasonal references that constitute the backbone

of these ancient forms of poetry instantly evoke specific emotions for Japanese readers because of their long history of use. (Haiku dates back to the 17th century, tanka to the seventh.) For Americans, not so much. And certain images of nature in Japanese culture make Americans think of the wrong season: Falling pine needles, for instance, mean summer to a Japanese native but evoke autumn in Americans' minds, says [Michiko] Oishi.

That's where her collaboration with [Judith] Chalmer, who is also a poet, came into play.

from Seven Days: In a Vermont Book of Poetry, American and Japanese Cultures Meld


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