Although it is now winter in New Zealand my garden is acting like it is late autumn, the scarlet leaves still gently falling from my maple trees. The leaves give me great pleasure and have inspired me to re-read a few autumnal haiku.
I went straight to the works of the greatest zen poet of all, Matsuo Basho (1644 - 1694) I never fail to be entranced by his succinct word pictures. Originally in training as a samurai, or warrior, Basho abandoned that life to travel around Japan and pursue the life of a wandering poet. His works are widely acclaimed throughout the world. This is his most well known Haiku: