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The Fifth Season -- Poems for the Recreation of the World

ISBN #   978-0-9742618-9-8

1.  Haiku – Translations into English

2.  English poetry – Translations from Japanese

3.  Japan – Culture – Edo Era, Meiji (17-20c)

4.  New Year’s Celebration – Japan

5. Nonfiction – Literature – essay

6. saijiki – shinnenbu

I. Gill, Robin D.  II. Series: IPOOH

The first edition, was supposed to be on sale at Feb. 18 2007, on the date of the Luni-solar New Year!

But, the PC died and at this date (Feb.1) I have just sent the pdf to my printer. But, it should be on sale at Amazon and Google, etc. soon and, if you want to pre-order, it is $28. and 468 pgs.


The Fifth Season – Poems for the Re-creation of the World,

or, the Japanese New Year, Books I & II of four, comprising Volume I of the delightfully dense and awfully eccentric saijiki In Praise of Olde Haiku (IPOOH) introduced, selected, translated and essayed by robin d. gill.  Includes the original of all Japanese poems, a bibliography, poet, poem, people and subject indexes.  

 In this book, the first of a series, Robin D. Gill, author of the highly acclaimed Rise, Ye Sea Slugs! and Cherry Blossom Epiphany, the largest single-theme anthologies of poetry ever published, explores the traditional Japanese New Year through 2,000 translated haiku (mostly 17-20c). 

 “The New Year,” R.H. Blyth once wrote, “is a season by itself.”  That was nowhere so plain as in the world of haiku, where saijiki, large collections called of ku illustrating hundreds, if not thousands of briefly explained seasonal themes, generally comprised five volumes, one for each season. Yet, the great doyen of haiku gave this fifth season, considered the first season when it came at the head of the Spring rather than in mid-winter, only a tenth of the pages he gave to each of the other four seasons (20 vs. 200).  Was Blyth, Zen enthusiast, not enamored with ritual?  Or, was he loath to translate the New Year with its many cultural idiosyncrasies (most common to the Sinosphere but not to the West), because he did not want to have to explain the haiku?  With these poems for the re-creation of the world, Robin D. Gill, aka “keigu” (respect foolishness, or respect-fool), rushes in where even Blyth feared to tread to give this supernatural or cosmological season – one that combines aspects of the Solstice, Christmas, New Year’s, Easter, July 4th and the Once Upon a Time of Fairy Tales – the attention it deserves.  With G.K. Chesterton’s words, evoking the mind of the haiku poets of old, the author-publisher leaves further description of the content to his reader-reviewers.       

“The man standing in his own kitchen-garden with the fairyland opening at the gate, is the man with large ideas. His mind creates distance; the motor-car stupidly destroys it.” (G.K. Chesterton: Heretics  1905)


My web files died with the pc and were not recovered.  If you see this page, it means I can work on what is not in my new pc! (Amazingly, i see a folder list, but suspect they are only on the server!) I put info on the book below in case, I can not make hyperlinks on other pages for a while. I am afraid to edit my New Book Page and add this until I know it is safe to work on.


i seem to have missed 2006 -- i must have been too busy writing to notice it come and go. But i leave 2005 here.

New Year's Xtian=2005

My last Year of the Cock was spent in Japan.  Late with my New Year's cards (like usual), I bought the foot of a chicken (sure, enough, narrow toe-nails just as Diogenes (did I get the right name?) noticed) and, using the ink-pad in the local post-office, proceeded to print some cocks/chickens.  Unfortunately their feet were a bit too long and since no one would guess what they were, brushed in enough to create a picture (as a footprint made from the butt of a human hand with fingertip toes can be turned into a turkey).  I wish I could say I just did this with no compunction, but to tell the truth, I still feel guilty, for it is pretty gross pushing the foot of an uncooked chicken into an ink pad used by many people.  Gomen nasai, ne!  (I doubt anyone who cannot read Japanese used the pad, so I apologize in Japanese.)

As far as chickens go, I insist upon buying free-range eggs.  I want the chickens to have the opportunity to play a little.  (I played a little for I was lucky enough to have gone to school before AIDS.)   But I do not give a damn if the eggs are organic or not.  Buying organic food is a selfish human thing.   Unless the poor -- i.e. all people, have the money to buy organic, it is discrimination, pure and simple, like bottle water, which I would outlaw.  Damn it!  We all live, or we all die!   Paris has made its water drinkable.  Dallas Texas has not.  You figure!  Not only Republicans and Democrats, but the whole damn country, "my country," is immoral, for it lives as if the wealthy alone have a right to live.  

Unfortunately, most free range is organic.   We are not allowed the choice of risking our health while treating chickens well.

Last year's New Year page remains in the links above (it is a Probiscis Monkey)   I have no interesting picture for this year.  But I do have a couple of my articles that I think you will find cheerful and informative:

At  LYNX, a journal for linking poets, you will  find:      A Place for Cow Slobber.    This article defends Teitoku's (in)famous ku  about icicles as cow-druel from the standard criticism of the Basho school of poetry. (Due to microsoft imperfections, my computer and the editor of LYNX's computer are not seeing eye-to-eye, so there will be some misspellings of the Japanese.)  Another article entitled "Pissing on the New Year" (a wee start for HIC = haiku in context = will be published in another online magazine, Simply Haiku in mid-February. It includes the most New Yearsy thing of all, some haiku by Japanese children.

*    I have a huge book nearly finished on/of New Year's haiku.  The New Year was a separate season -- one of five -- in traditional haiku.  Even the great Blyth failed to give more than 5% of his Haiku to this season, for it poses problems not found in any other.  The Fifth Season, the first book in the IPOOH (In Praise of Olde Haiku) series will be published this year.  2007-2-2 This was it, then. Now it is!