not only waiting
for the harvest moon to rise…
in pampas grass shadows
on the mountain scarecrow’s
“Gimme that harvest moon!”
cries the crying
………………………………… by Kobayashi Issa, translated by David G. Lanoue
Special thanks for the Harvest Moon image to Don Weeks of the Schenectady, NY, radio station 810 WGY, who didn’t want nature’s failure to cooperate to deprive his listeners of their Harvest Moon. Don has been the Capital Region’s favorite wake-up broadcaster for many years — and, he’s not even gross or angry! (He is witty and insightful, though, and willing to by silly.)
I’ll be out under our rainy clouds this evening going to my first class as a student in many years — Spanish for Beginners, taught by Mildred Chang for the Schenectady public school district’s adult/continuing education program. You are all duly deputized by Mama G. to nag me about doing my homework.
For more Harvest Moon haiku, go to our postings from prior years
- “this moon’s for you!“
- “more harvest moon haiku“
- “don’t forget to look up“
- “moon cakes, harvest moons & more“
And find dozens more at David G. Lanoue’s Haiku of Kobayshi Issa website.
Afterthought: It looks like dagosan is not the only person who thinks traditional Chinese moon cakes are less than a total taste treat. See “In China, a Moon Cake Makeover: For Mid-Autumn Festival, Bakers Replace Traditional Fillings With Trendier Fare,” Washington Post, Sept. 26, 2007 (hat tip to Roberta Beary). As the WaPo Article explains:
“[J]ust off Peace Avenue in a neighborhood cluttered with Western chain stores, employees at an ice cream shop were busy packaging hundreds of red boxes of moon cakes filled with green tea ice cream and Belgian chocolate ice cream. In the fancy shops of upscale hotels and the stores of the Beijing pastry chain Wei Duo Mei, moon cakes filled with abalone, dried scallops, pineapple, New Zealand cheese and Japanese coffee were flying off the shelves, at prices of up to $39 for a box of eight.
“As millions of Chinese buy and exchange moon cakes this week as part of a business networking ritual, companies are inventing a growing number of nontraditional pastries to try to keep young people interested in the traditional holiday.”
harvest moon party –
the hostess stares and stares
at the cloud cover
………………………………………… by dagosan
update (Sept. 27, 2007): With a little persistence, I did get to see the Harvest Moon last night in all its glory in the real world sky over Schenectady. Although it was covered by clouds at 7 PM and 8 PM, the clouds cleared in just the right spot around 9 PM, and the Harvest Moon appeared in the window above my computer, luring me back outside. Shortly thereafter, a slight haze covered the moon, creating another beautiful image. Now, if only I knew a haiku poet who could record the moment for me.
update (Oct. 1, 2007): Verlyn Klinkenborg has an intriguing op/ed piece in today’s New York Times, called
“Watching the Full Moon Rise Over the Northeast Corridor” (October 1, 2007) . She notes, while describing viewing the moon from a fast passenger train, that “Something about the moon brings to life one metaphor after another.” And continues:
“For at one point, just as darkness was really taking hold, I let myself say — and it was a cliché, of course—that this moon was as ripe as a tropical fruit. And yet it really was exactly the color of the flesh of a tropical fruit I had bought the night before. The fruit was called a mamey sapote, which comes from Central and South America. Unpeeled, it looks like an oversized and perfectly oval potato. But under the rind is a deep mahogany seed and the mildly sweet flesh of a ripe September moon, which is slightly aphrodisiacal they say.
“Not only was the moon that night the color of the pulp of a softening mamey. It also wore the same open-mouthed expression as the woman behind the cash register when she realized that the mamey she was ringing up on Broadway cost some 500 times more than it did in the markets at home in Ecuador.”
The piece ends: “But soon it rose into some new analogy, some new association, and by then I had fallen asleep.”