The Narrow Road to Oku
Super Savings Item! Save 37% on the The Narrow Road to Oku by Kodansha International at Charles Freeland Poetry. Hurry! Limited time offer. Offer valid only while supplies last. In the account which he named ''The Narrow Road to Oku,'' Basho makes a journey lasting 150 days, in which he travels, on foot, a distance of 600
In the account which he named "The Narrow Road to Oku," Basho makes a journey lasting 150 days, in which he travels, on foot, a distance of 600 ri.
This was three hundred years ago, when the average distance covered by travelers was apparently 9 ri per day, so it is clear that Basho, who was forty years old at the time, possessed a remarkably sturdy pair of walking legs. Nowadays with the development of all sorts of means of transportation, travel is guaranteed to be pleasant and convenient in every respect, so it's almost impossible for us to imagine the kind of journey Basho undertook, "drifting with the clouds and streams," and "lodging under trees and on bare rocks."
During my countless re-readings of "The Narrow Road to Oku," I would bear that in mind, and the short text, which takes up less than 50 pages even in the pocket-book edition, would strike me as much longer than that, and I would feel truly awed by Basho's 2,450-kilometer journey.
I chose "The Narrow Road to Oku" as the theme of the exhibition marking the thirtieth anniversary of my career as an artist. As somebody who has been illustrating works from Japanese literature for many years, the subject naturally attracted and interested me. But once I'd embarked on the project, it wasn't long before I realized I'd chosen a more difficult and delicate task than I ever imagined, and I wanted to reprove myself for my naivete.
Last year, to mark the centenary of Tanizaki Jun'ichiro's birth, I produced a set of 54 pictures for his translation of "The Tale of Genji." This was a formidable undertaking, as I had to grapple with the achievement of a literary genius whom I had personally known. But if producing a single picture to represent each chapter in "The Tale of Genji" was a matter of selecting a particular "face," or "plane" to represent the whole, producing a picture to represent each haiku in "The Narrow Road to Oku" was without a doubt a matter of having to select one tiny "point"--a mere "dot." One misjudgment in my reading, and the picture would lose touch with the spirit of Basho's work, and end up simply as an illustration that happened to be accompanied by a haiku. I had to meticulously consider every word in those brief 17-syllable poems. Then, if I was fortunate, from the vast gaps and the densely packed phrases a numinous power would gather and inspire me: at times I felt as if I was experiencing what ancient people called the "kotadama," the miraculous power residing in words.
A self-styled "beggar of winds and madness," Basho originated and refined a unique genre of fictional travel literature, which used poetry that enabled one to render, empty-handedly, all of creation. I believe that I could ask for no greater favor from my painter's brush than that I too be able to glean the merest fragment of what the saint of haiku Basho saw, and be able to reproduce it in my work. — Miyata Masayuki
|Item Size:||0.58 x 8.9 x 8.9 inches|
|Package Weight:||1.1 pounds|
|Package Size:||5.43 x 0.79 x 0.79 inches|
Have questions about this item, or would like to inquire about a custom or bulk order?
If you have any questions about this product by Kodansha International, contact us by completing and submitting the form below. If you are looking for a specif part number, please include it with your message.
Related Best Sellers
By W. W. Norton & Company
ean: 9780393074901, isbn: 0393074900,
“Ai is a truthteller picking her way through the burning rocks of racial and sexual lies.”―Joy Harjo Before her untimely death in 2010, Ai, known for her searing dramatic monologues, was hailed as “one of the most singular voices of her gener...
By David Galef
mpn: , black & white illustrations, black & w, ean: 9784805312001, isbn: 4805312009,
"Destroy a nation, but its mountains and rivers remain."—Japanese proverbThis is a collection of 200 Japanese proverbs with illustrations and explanations for each saying. Japanese Proverbs: Wit and Wisdom is a delightfully illustrated compilation ...
By Stanford University Press
ean: 9780804725262, isbn: 0804725268,
This book has a dual purpose. The first is to present in a new English translation 255 representative hokku (or haiku) poems of Matsuo Basho (1644-94), the Japanese poet who is generally considered the most influential figure in the history of the ge...
By Heian Intl Pub Co
ean: 9780893461614, isbn: 089346161X,
Volume 4 in the Blyth collection which introduced haiku to many in the West....
By Brand: Copper Canyon Press
ean: 9781556594267, isbn: 1556594267,
"Lovers of haiku will rejoice at the arrival of this book, the first complete translation of the collected haiku of Yosa Buson...rendered into English with obvious care and devotion...Through Buson we realize what haiku is best at expressingthis mo...
mpn: 9781419718892, ean: 9781419718892, isbn: 1419718894,
Guess Who, Haiku is a unique poetic guessing game illustrated by bestselling and beloved artist Bob Shea. Author Deanna Caswell’s playful take on the inventive Japaense form of poetry offers clues about the creatures hiding on every page in this cr...
By Arcade Publishing
ean: 9781611453492, isbn: 1611453496,
The haiku of acclaimed novelist Richard Wright, written at the end of his life.Richard Wright, one of the early forceful and eloquent spokesmen for black Americans, author of the acclaimed Native Son and Black Boy, discovered the haiku in the last ei...
ean: 9780141392578, isbn: 0141392576,
One of the three seminal works of Japanese literature—a beautiful collection of poems and tales that offers an unparalleled insight into ancient JapanAlong with the Tale of Genji and One Hundred Poets, One Poem Each, the Tales of Ise is consid...
By Terrance Brooks Boykin
ean: 9780692865057, isbn: 0692865055,
Once in the World is an exploration of ephemeral moments that emerge in the form of stillness, subtle actions and dramatic events. Inspired by the 16th century Japanese tradition of haiku poetry, Terrance Brooks Boykin creates a travelogue of compact...
By Kodansha International
ean: 9781568365213, isbn: 1568365217,
Writing and Enjoying Haiku shows how haiku can bring a centered, calming atmosphere into one’s life, by focusing on the outer realities of life instead of the naggings of the inner mind, by gaining a new appreciation for the world of nature, and by...