Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The Donkeys of Tanabata

The light is almost gone now and soon we will be able to see the MIlky Way
as our group celebrates Tanabata in the hills above Livermore in July of 2007. 
The donkeys in the next field over are curious about our party, but 
no one has told them the story of the Weaver Girl and the Herdboy yet. 

my grandfather taught me how
paper kimonos
Kiyoko Tokutomi
from Kiyoko's Sky; the haiku of Kiyoko Tokutomi,
Brooks Books, 2002, page 21.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Get ready for Tanabata!

For many years, the California group of the YTHS has planned to assemble 
on a weekend near to July 7th to celebrate Tanabata, the Star Festival. 
Kiyoko introduced us to this Japanese celebration.
The ideal location is where is gets dark enough 
to see the Milky Way well, and see if one can pick out the bright stars:
Vega and Altair, who represent lovers separated by a cruel monarch's
diktat that they could only be together one day a year.
During the celebration, we write haiku on slips of paper called tanzaku,
or on paper kimonos, as pictured. 
These poem-papers then are hung on bamboo shoots.
Sometimes, someone brings the bamboo, as we did here.
As we prepare for the reunion of the lovers this week, this blog 
will feature photos and poems from past Tanabata celebrations.

as evening deepens
the insect chorus begins
--star festival

june hopper hymas

Note: please accept my apologies 
for the month's pause in this blog.
I am returning with renewed
determination. jhh