haibun
A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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September 2007, vol 3 no 3

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Hortensia Anderson

 

Basho's Frog

One evening, I have a raging fever. The next morning, I can barely hear. Testing reveals substantial hearing loss. I will need a hearing aid.

As I wait the week for the hearing aid, I sit by the pond at a friend's home, with a book of translations of Basho's famous frog haiku.

On the other side of the pond, there is a frog on a rock but he won't jump. I try to make him–I toss stones. I yell at him. I jump up and down. I splash my hands in the pond. But he just sits.

Annoyed, I return to the book. Suddenly the pages and my arms have droplets splashed on them. I look and the stone is empty.

green pond—
the frog jumps
into itself