An act of Buddhist kindness.

Shijo-Surimono, Glühwürmchen und Gräser, Japanese woodcut

Shijo Surimono with fireflies and grasses. Japanese woodcut.

As an act of Buddhist kindness, Basho once ingeniously reversed a cruel haiku made up by his witty disciple.

Kikaku had said: ‘A red firefly / Tear off its wings / A pepper.’

Basho substituted: ‘A pepper / Give it wings / A red firefly.’

From André Breton, Ascendant Sign, 1942.


2 thoughts on “An act of Buddhist kindness.

  1. Thanks very much Greg, this was definitely interesting – got me thinking about museums and Second Life – and a couple of things more.

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