Kobayashi Issa


Kobayashi Issa

nihongo|Kobayashi Issa|小林一茶 (June 15, 1763 - January 5, 1828), Japanese poet and Buddhist priest known for his haiku poems and journals. He is regarded as one of the four haiku masters in Japan, along with Bashō, Buson and Shiki. Reflecting the popularity and interest in Issa as man and poet, Japanese books on Issa outnumber those on Buson, and almost equal those on Bashō [Ueda, p.xi] .

Life

He was born Kobayashi Yataro (小林弥太郎) into a peasant family of Kashiwabara, Shinano Province (present-day Shinanomachi, Nagano prefecture). Issa endured the loss of his mother, who died when he was three. Her passing was the first of numerous difficulties young Issa suffered. He was cared for by his grandmother, who doted on him, but his life changed again when his father remarried five years later. Issa's half-brother was born two years later, and when his grandmother died when he was 14, Issa felt estranged in his own house, a lonely, moody child who preferred to wander the fields. His winsome attitude did not please his stepmother, who, according to Lewis Mackenzie, was a "tough-fibred 'managing' woman of hard-working peasant stock." [Mackenzie, page 14] He was sent to Edo (present-day Tokyo) to eke out a living by his father one year later. Nothing of the next ten years of his life is known for certain. His name was associated with Kobayashi Chikua (小林竹阿) of the Nirokuan (二六庵) haiku school, but their relationship is not clear. During the following years, he wandered through Japan and fought over his inheritance with his stepmother (his father died in 1801). After years of legal wrangles, Issa managed to secure rights to half of the property his father left. He returned to his native village at the age of 49 [Hamill, p.xviii] and soon took a wife, Kiku. After a brief period of bliss, tragedy returned. The couple's first-born child died shortly after his birth. A daughter died less than two-and-a-half years later, inspiring Issa to write this haiku (translated by Lewis Mackenzie):

:The world of dew --:A world of dew it is indeed,:And yet, and yet . . .

A third child died in 1820, and then Kiku fell ill and died in 1823. Issa married twice more late in his life, and through it all he produced a huge body of work.

According to the Western Calendar, Issa died on January 5, 1828 in his native village. According to the old Japanese calendar, he died on the 19th day of Eleventh Month, Tenth Year of the Bunsei era. Since the Tenth Year of Bunsei roughly corresponds with 1827, many sources list this as his year of death.

Writings

He wrote over 20,000 haiku, which have won him readers up to the present day. Though his works were popular, he suffered great monetary instability. Despite a multitude of personal trials, his poetry reflects a childlike simplicity, making liberal use of local dialects and conversational phrases. His works also include haibun (passages of prose with integrated haiku) such as "Oraga Haru" (おらが春 "My Spring") and "Shichiban Nikki" (七番日記 "Number Seven Journal"), and he collaborated on more than 250 renku (collaborative linked verse). [Ueda, p.169]

One of Issa's haiku, as translated by R.H. Blyth, appears in J. D. Salinger's 1961 novel, "Franny and Zooey"::O snail:Climb Mount Fuji,:But slowly, slowly!

Another, translated by D.T. Suzuki, was written during a period of Issa's life when he was penniless and deep in debt. It reads::Trusting the Buddha (Amida), good and bad,:I bid farewell:To the departing year.

References

* Sam Hamill (trans.), "The Spring of My Life and Selected Haiku: Kobayashi Issa", Shambhala Publications, 1997, ISBN 1-57062-144-6 pbk (180 pp., 160 haiku plus "The Spring of My Life", an autobiographical haibun)
* David G. Lanoue, "Pure Land Haiku: The Art of Priest Issa", Buddhist Books International, 2004, ISBN 0-914910-53-1
* Lewis Mackenzie (trans.), "The Autumn Wind: A Selection from the Poems of Issa", Kodansha International, 1984 ISBN 0-87011-657-6 (137 pp., 250 haiku)(originally published 1957)
*
*

Notes

External links

* [http://haikuguy.com/issa/ Haiku of Kobayashi Issa] A searchable online archive of 9000 haiku by David G. Lanoue. Originally housed at Xavier University of Louisiana, this archive was moved after Hurricane Katrina to its present, permanent location.
* [https://kb.osu.edu/dspace/handle/1811/620 The Evening Banter of Two Tanu-ki: Reading the Tobi Hiyoro Sequence] A Hankasen renku by Issa and Kawahara Ippyō. Trans. Scot Hislop
* [http://www.janis.or.jp/users/kyodoshi/issaku.htm 一茶発句全集 (The complete haiku of Issa)]
* [http://park3.wakwak.com/~issakinenkan/ 一茶記念館 (Issa Memorial Museum)]


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  • Kobayashi Issa — (jap. 小林 一茶; * 15. Juni 1763 in Kashiwabara, Provinz Shinano (heute: Stadtteil von Shinano, Präfektur Nagano); † 5. Januar 1828 ebenda; bürgerlicher Name: Kobayashi Nobuyuki ( …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kobayashi Issa — (小林 一茶, Kobayashi Issa?) est un poète japonais, écrivain de haïku. De son vrai nom, Kobayashi Nobuyuki (alias Yatarō dans sa jeunesse), il est né en 1763 dans le village de Kashiwabara dans la province de Shinano et est mort en 1828 à Kashiwabara …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kobayashi Issa — Kobayashi Issa. Kobayashi Issa (小林一茶, Kobayashi Issa …   Wikipedia Español

  • Kobayashi Issa — (小林一茶, 15 de junio de 1763 – 5 de enero de 1827) fue un escritor japonés, nacido Kobayashi Nobuyuki y apodado Yataro durante su juventud. Es famoso como autor de haiku. Era la primavera de 1763 en la ciudad de Kashiwabara, en la antigua provincia …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Kobayashi Nobuyuki — Kobayashi Issa Kobayashi Issa (jap. 小林 一茶; * 15. Juni 1763 in Kashiwabara, Provinz Shinano (heute: Stadtteil von Shinano, Präfektur Nagano); † 5. Januar 1828 ebenda; bürgerlicher Name: Kobayashi Nobuyuki (小林 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kobayashi Yataro — Kobayashi Issa Kobayashi Issa (jap. 小林 一茶; * 15. Juni 1763 in Kashiwabara, Provinz Shinano (heute: Stadtteil von Shinano, Präfektur Nagano); † 5. Januar 1828 ebenda; bürgerlicher Name: Kobayashi Nobuyuki (小林 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kobayashi Yatarō — Kobayashi Issa Kobayashi Issa (jap. 小林 一茶; * 15. Juni 1763 in Kashiwabara, Provinz Shinano (heute: Stadtteil von Shinano, Präfektur Nagano); † 5. Januar 1828 ebenda; bürgerlicher Name: Kobayashi Nobuyuki (小林 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Issa Kobayashi — Issa 一茶 Portrait de Issa (dessiné par Muramatsu Shunpo 1772 1858). Nom de naissance Nobuyuki Kobayashi Autres …   Wikipédia en Français

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  • Issa — can refer to: *Issa or Isa, the Arabic name for Jesus of Nazareth; see Jesus (prophet in Islam). *Issa, the name for Jesus associated with his alleged travels in Tibet and India, as recorded by Nicolas Notovitch. *Issa Schultz, an Australian quiz …   Wikipedia


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