a small space
between wit and wonder
left vacant

Friday, February 17, 2012

The Good Goblet

(click on image to enlarge)

Photo: Mud Men on a Jade Stand by E. Andre
Overall Size of the Mud Men figurine: 
30 X 48mm (approx. 1-3/16th" X 1-7/8th")

game of go ~
see the good goblet
that we share

The haiku is based is on the Confucian Commentaries in the I Ching 
for the change "Chung Fu"  -  "Inner Truth":

A crane calling in the shade.
Its young answers it.
I have a good goblet.
I will share it with you.

The "Mud Men" playing Go represent two of the "Seven Sages in a Bamboo Grove," a favorite Literati painting subject depicting the Seven Chinese Sages, two of which are often depicted as playing Go.

In a Japanese version there is a "poetic" name for the scene of the two Go Players is titled: 
Ranka らんか【爛柯】.
Ranka, in Japanese, means "rotten axe handle", and it comes from the following legend:

A woodcutter stopped by to watch a game of Go played by two mountain sages. When the game finished, so much time had passed that he found that the handle of his axe had rotted away. (See painting below)

(click on image to enlarge)

Some versions present the Go Players in the foreground:

(click on image to enlarge)

The ranks of the sages is expanded in the Ukiyo-e Woodblock images of the Floating World (17th to 20th centuries), in which Geisha are celebrated as feminine versions of Literati Artists, also Go Players:

See my haiku and photo entry, which was added to the World Kigo Database today:

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Silk for the Soul ~

Whitney Elizabeth Houston 
August 9, 1963 –– February 11, 2012

A haiku (senryu) tribute to Whitney:

bronze beauty
with the golden voice
now silent

silk for the soul ~
only angels sing
with her voice

(photo from the movie The Bodyguard – 1992)

"I Will Always Love You" - official version:

Whitney Houston was an American singer, actress, producer, and model. Houston was the most awarded female act of all time, according to Guinness World Records. Her list of awards includes: 
  • 2 Emmy Awards 
  • 6 Grammy Awards 
  • 30 Billboard Music Awards 
  • 22 American Music Awards 
  • a total of 415 career awards as of 2010

Houston was also one of the world's best-selling music artists, having sold over 170 million albums, singles and videos worldwide. Inspired by prominent soul singers in her family, including her mother Cissy Houston, cousins Dionne Warwick and Dee Dee Warwick, and her godmother Aretha Franklin, Houston began singing with New Jersey church's junior gospel choir at age 11.

After she began performing alongside her mother in night clubs in the New York City area, she was discovered by Arista Records label head Clive Davis. Houston released seven studio albums and three movie soundtrack albums, all of which have diamond, multi-platinum, platinum or gold certification. On February 11, 2012, Houston was found dead at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, in Beverly Hills, California, of causes not immediately known. Beverly Hills paramedics found the singer unresponsive and performed CPR for about 20 minutes before declaring her dead at 3:55 p.m.

Local police said there were "no obvious signs of criminal intent."