The Narrow Road (4) – December 7, 2015

this dreary rainfall
falls on late-blooming cherries
mingling
fallen petals and rain drops
upon this unknown road

© G.s.k. ‘15

Carpe Diem #874 Rainhat Island; since the cherry blossoms

 

Passing through the castle towns of Abumizuri and Shiroishi, I arrived at the province of Kasajima (Rainhat Island), where I asked the way to the mound of Lord Sanekata of the Fujiwara family. I was told that I must turn right in the direction of the villages of Minowa and Kasajima visible at the foot of the mountains in the distance, and that the mound was still there by the side of a shrine, buried in deep grass. I wanted to go that way, of course, but the muddy road after the early rain of the wet season and my weakness stopped me. The names of the two villages were so befitting to the wet season with their echoes of raincoat and umbrella that I wrote:

Rainhat Island—
where did you say it was?
muddy roads in May

© Basho (Tr. Donald Keene)