Plum Blossom and Moon

This brief collection of plum blossom haiku celebrates the “Winter Gentleman”. In the art of Chinese painting, the “Four Gentlemen” are plum blossom, orchid, bamboo and chrysanthemum. The order of these flowers agrees with their corresponding seasons: winter, spring, summer and fall. In addition to their importance in Chinese painting, the Four Gentlemen, also called the Four Noblemen or Four Friends, all play an important role in Chinese culture.

Pink and White Plum Blossoms in Moonlight - So Shizan, late 18th century
Great moon
woven in plum scent,
all mine.
~Issa

 Kobayashi Issa (1763–1827) was a Japanese poet and lay Buddhist priest known for his haiku poems and journals. He is better known as simply Issa, a pen name meaning Cup-of-tea. Sometimes Issa is lyrical and eloquent; sometimes he is tongue-in-cheek, and sometimes he is very mischievous!  Issa is considered one of the four great Haiku Masters, along with Basho (1644-1694), Buson (1716- 1784), and Shiki (1867-1902).

Moon, plum blossoms,
this, that,
and the day goes.
~ Issa
Dark red plum blossoms covered in snow symbolize winter, but are also harbingers of spring

Plum blossoms (méi-huā) are one of the most beloved flowers in China. They bloom most vibrantly in the winter snow, after the autumn plants lose their leaves and before the spring plants begin to bloom. They represent resilience and perseverance in the face of adversity. 

Plum blossoms are the epitome of exquisite elegance, symbolizing inner beauty and gentle humility in challenging circumstances.

The scent of plum blossoms
on the misty mountain path
a big rising sun

~ Basho

 

Spring too, very soon!
They are setting the scene for it —
plum tree and moon.

~ Basho

Plum, Pine and Bamboo , 1942 - two artists seals: Chen Shuren (1883 - 1948) Xu Beihong (1895 - 1953)

A haiku master gives us advice on writing poetry:

“Go to the pine if you want to learn about the pine, or to the bamboo if you want to learn about the bamboo. And in doing so, you must leave your subjective preoccupation with yourself. Otherwise you impose yourself on the object and do not learn. Your poetry issues of its own accord when you and the object have become one – when you have plunged deep enough into the object to see something like a hidden glimmering there.”


~ Basho

The Japanese Zen poet Matsuo Basho (Matsuo Munefusa) (1644-94) had earned the status of a samurai warrior, when he gave it all up to become a poet.  He is credited  with elevating haiku to a highly refined art that goes far beyond counting syllables.  To learn more about Basho, click here: Basho and the Art of Haiku

5 1 vote
Post Rating

Help support our family-friendly mission
Buy our Kindle Book- or -Become a Patron

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Most Voted Comments

Avatar
8

Bait

It takes a real talent to tell a story in so few words. What was…


Avatar
6

Endure and Sing

Inspirational piece. Am glad you picked the rat to be the protagonist in your story,…


Avatar
6

Endure and Sing

Such a sweet tale - and with a good moral to the story. I thought…


Avatar
5

Endure and Sing

Wow! This is a good story! Really good to read to little kids, the moral…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Hi Katy, it really does add an extra dimension to hear your story read aloud…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

In my neighboring country Denmark, we have the classical storyteller Hans-Christian Andersen. Your sweet story…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

A really nice one with a wonderful story line. I can see why this was…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

A beautiful story! I was reminded of seeing Paul Potts and Susan Boyle on Britain's…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Your story inspired me to keep going no matter how discouraging it gets. At times…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Thank you so much for the feedback! I pray that the young readers will be…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Thank you for taking the time to comment and convey your thoughts on the story.…


Avatar
4

Endure and Sing

Hi Katy, don't we all feel like the rat in your story at times! We…


Avatar
4

Vows

I must admit it was the picture of the church, with its grave yard, under…


Avatar
3

In Memoriam

It's terrible to lose someone you love and accept that he is not a part…


Avatar
3

The Problem with Women

I think Carrie has said it all. We rest our collective case.  ? 


Avatar
3

The Fisherman and the Sea

A good story with a strong message. The time has come that we should do…


Avatar
3

The Fisherman and the Sea

It is giving me great joy to read such beautiful comments from you.Thank you for…


Avatar
3

Voice.club 2020 Year In Review – OPEN

The New Year has always been a time for reflection, and to focus on what…


Mary Kot
3

Endure and Sing

I wish all of us were more like this little mouse! His confidence and courage…


Avatar
3

Endure and Sing

I'm really glad to hear that! Leena Auckel did an amazing job and I'm so…


Recent Comments


Become a PatronHelp support our family-friendly mission

Contest – CLOSED – Scary

0
Selected Authors may submit comments (5 Credits)x
()
x
Scroll to Top

Sharing a Post

Why do my friends need to SignIn to read the post I shared?

Actually, this is a voting security feature. Only club members can read posts submitted into a contest. Since anyone reading the story is able to vote (click the Like button), we reserve these capabilities to members who SignIn. Before we implemented this security feature, people were voting multiple times and making the public voting process unfair and out of balance. To fix this, our staff finally decided to allow only members who SignIn to read the stories. Membership is free and easy, and ensures our club is safe, secure, and family-friendly!

Gems Stories are public:  On the other hand the Gem stories are different, since there is no voting on Gems. During a Gem event, your friends and fans can come on and read without a SignIn. This is one of the great advantages of the Gem events.