Category Archives: Japan

Borrowed Words (2)

In Japanese landscape gardening the word shakkei means “borrowed view.” The designer “borrows,” or incorporates, any view beyond property borders, thereby visually enlarging his own property and landscape.  This winter in Northampton has meant enclosure in the house, trapped by unrelenting cold and snow, and enclosure … Continue reading

Posted in Japan, Quotes, winter, Wisdom, Writers | Tagged , , , | 16 Comments

To The Lighthouse —

“If you are writing the clearest, truest words you can find and doing the best you can to understand and communicate, this will shine on paper like its own little lighthouse. Lighthouses don’t go running all over an island looking for … Continue reading

Posted in Japan, Quotes, Reading, Writers | Tagged , , , | 29 Comments

TODAY’S PORTRAIT: YOU CAN CALL HER PEONY

Two young things were the subjects of the first two flower portraits. So it’s exciting to turn to a more assured, mature beauty for our third. She is known formally as Paeonia Suffruticosa, but Peony is the name we are likely to … Continue reading

Posted in Flowers, Japan, Photography | Tagged , , , , , , | 18 Comments

A Cherry Hung with Snow…

Simply trust, Simply trust! Cherry blossoms in bloom                 Japanese haiku poet Kobayashi Issa It’s Japanese practice (as I understand it) to display each seasonal decoration, like this cherry blossom bonsai, a little in … Continue reading

Posted in Flowers, Japan, Nature, Pioneer Valley, Poetry, Spring | Tagged , , , , | 31 Comments

Promiscuously, in a Vase

Why have I been sequestered so long, away from my blogs (and yours)? I’ve been preparing to moderate a seminar on the Cultural Arts of Japan in our local Learning in Retirement program. I’m sure that in a previous life … Continue reading

Posted in Challenge, Etcetera, Flowers, Japan, Nature, Pioneer Valley, Quotes, winter | Tagged , , , , , | 22 Comments

Spring in the Heart

Coming along the mountain path Somehow it tugs my heart Wild violet (trans. Lesley Downer) The mercury slunk down to – 12 Fahrenheit last night. Or thereabouts. At such low temperatures, what difference does it make? All is white, white, … Continue reading

Posted in Etcetera, Flowers, Japan, Nature, Photography, Poetry, Spring, winter | Tagged , , , , , , | 22 Comments

In Praise of Shadows

Here in the West we often favor brilliant colors, hyperrealism, and a superabundance of light. Dazzle! Clarity! Vision! But in the East, in Japan, there are also alternate aesthetic values. This quote from the novelist Junichiro Tanizaki presents a traditional … Continue reading

Posted in Flowers, Japan, Mindfulness, Quotes, Writers | Tagged , , , | 16 Comments