Haiku XVI

Haiku XVI by Fred Slusher

Quick: run for your life 
You’re almost out of time now
Hold tight for dear life

Reader-friends, we have now reached the end of our haiku journey together. I had this wild notion to put sixteen haiku I wrote on a rainy afternoon onto this blog one at a time, and I really appreciate the response I’ve gotten from you all. So appreciative, in fact, that I have a little bonus for you.

Right now, I am putting together a collection of all the haiku I’ve published here on The Voracious Bibliophile and soon you’ll be able to have them all together. More to come on that later.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

Haiku XV

Haiku XV by Fred Slusher

It’s there on the roof 
Personification of
Your wildest dreams, dear

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.

All Aboard the ARC: Basho’s Haiku Journeys by Freeman Ng (Author) and Cassandra Rockwood Ghanem (Illustrator)

Basho’s Haiku Journeys by Freeman Ng (Author) and Cassandra Rockwood Ghanem (Illustrator)

***Note: I received a free digital review copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.***

I must admit, before reading Basho’s Haiku Journeys I knew next to nothing about Matsuo Basho, the Japanese poet who lived in the seventeenth century and is credited with inventing the haiku. For those of you unfamiliar with the form, a haiku is a short-form poem most often containing seventeen syllables in three lines, with five in the first line, seven in the second line, and five in the third and last line. Most haiku are about nature and haiku purists insist that only haiku about nature can be considered true haiku, but the form has evolved to include other topics.

For most of his life, Basho lived a comfortable and cosmopolitan life in Edo, which was then the capital city of Japan. He made his living teaching and writing, but there was an unfulfilled longing inside him—to see more, to experience the vibrancy of life more fully. He lived in a hut outside Edo that his students had built for him, and one night it caught fire and burned to the ground.

Most people would feel devastated at the loss of all their earthly possessions, but Basho felt liberated. He wandered into the woods, basking in the elation he felt at his change in fortune. It was then he decided to adopt an itinerant lifestyle, beginning the first of what would become five long journeys. From 1684-1689, Basho would traverse the length of his country and write about the beauty of the natural world in books that would later become classics of Japanese literature.

This book is a must-purchase for children’s librarians, language arts teachers, and parents and guardians who want their children to be curious and creative citizens of the world.

Ng honors Basho by telling his story in haiku form and the result is nothing short of breathtaking. One of the hallmarks of a good book is that it leaves you wanting more and in that regard Ng has more than succeeded. Cassandra Rockwood Ghanem’s gorgeous hand-painted illustrations add depth and clarity to Basho’s story. This book is a must-purchase for children’s librarians, language arts teachers, and parents and guardians who want their children to be curious and creative citizens of the world.

Portrait of Matsuo Basho (18th-19th century) by Hokusai. Public domain.

Basho’s Haiku Journeys is due to be released on October 19th, 2021 by Stone Bridge Press and is now available to preorder wherever books are sold.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

Haiku XIV

Haiku XIV by Fred Slusher

How long is the night?
Ain’t no preacher knows the way.
Water make me clean.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.

Haiku XIII

Haiku XIII by Fred Slusher

Electric city. 
Love boats made planks on the rocks.
Ruin, my one song.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.

Haiku XII

Haiku XII by Fred Slusher

Window pane on fire. 
Darling, where’s my wedding gown?
Pain, bring me a pyre.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.

Haiku XI

Haiku XI by Fred Slusher

War memorial: 
A hurricane of lilacs;
Big wind, pray for me.

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.

Haiku X

Haiku X by Fred Slusher

Poignant memories 
Bitter like forgotten dreams
I’m always awake

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.

Haiku IX

Haiku IX by Fred Slusher

Glass house tinkling 
Bring down a mountain of rocks
Flesh out of new skin

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.

Haiku VIII

Haiku VIII by Fred Slusher

War is nothing but 
a militia of sharp teeth:
wolves lapping up blood

Thanks as always for being a faithful reader of The Voracious Bibliophile. If you like what you see, please like, comment, follow, and subscribe to my email list to get notified of new posts as soon as they drop. You can also email me at fred.slusher@thevoraciousbibliophile.com or catch me on Twitter and Instagram @voraciousbiblog. Keep reading the world, one page (or pixel) at a time.

© 2021 Fred Slusher. All rights reserved.