Makoto Ueda has given us several great gifts with his book on women haiku poets: introductions to a host of writers previously unknown to readers in English; concise and eloquent translations of their workUeda's translation simply gets better and better with each book and makes it look easyand a revised view of the history of haiku. Its richness increases with every reading.
Far Beyond the Field: Haiku by Japanese Womenby Makoto Ueda
Far Beyond the Field is a first-of-its-kind anthology of haiku by Japanese women, collecting translations of four hundred haiku written by twenty poets from the seventeenth century to the present. By arranging the poems chronologically, Makoto Ueda has created an overview of the way in which this enigmatic seventeen-syllable form has been used and/i>
Far Beyond the Field is a first-of-its-kind anthology of haiku by Japanese women, collecting translations of four hundred haiku written by twenty poets from the seventeenth century to the present. By arranging the poems chronologically, Makoto Ueda has created an overview of the way in which this enigmatic seventeen-syllable form has been used and experimented with during different eras. At the same time, the reader is admitted to the often marginalized world of female experience in Japan, revealing voices every bit as rich and colorful, and perhaps even more lyrical and erotic, than those found in male haiku.
Listen, for instance, to Chiyojo, who worked in what has been long thought of as the dark age of haiku during the eighteenth century, but who composed exquisitely fine poems tracing the smallest workings of nature. Or Katsuro Nobuko, who wrote powerfully erotic poems when she was widowed after only two years of marriage. And here, too, is a voice from today, Mayuzumi Madoka, whose meditations on romantic love represent a fresh new approach to haiku.
What People are saying about this
This book breaks new ground and provides an important entrée into the subject of women's haiku for English readers. Deeply moving, amusing, insightful, thought provoking, and breathtakingly beautiful by turns, the poems in this volume cover a wide range of human experience. They reveal both the continuity of a haiku sensibility over the centuries and individual difference. And how good it is to see the women haiku students of Basho getting their due!
Meet the Author
Makoto Ueda is professor emeritus of Japanese at Stanford University. He has written, translated, or edited fourteen books, including Modern Japanese Tanka and Light Verse from the Floating World.
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