Yamaguchi Seison


Yamaguchi Seison 山口青邨

May 10, 1892 - December 15, 1988

born as Yamaguchi Kichiroo (山口吉朗) in Morioka, Iwate prefecture.

He studied engineering at the Tokyo University and worked there as a professor.
He learned haiku from Takahama Kyoshi. He is known for his haiku "with a taste of the earth" and there are many from his home region,
Michinoku 陸奥, as the Northern parts of Japan around Iwaki 磐城 and Iwashiro 岩代 and the three regions of the Mutsu 陸前 ・ 陸中 ・ 陸奥 are known.
(Michinoku is the short version of "michi no oku" . Today parts of the former Michinoku area are situated in Aomori, Miyagi, Iwate and Fukushima.)

. Michinoku, Mutsu 陸奥 region in Tohoku .

Together with Mizuhara Shuoshi, Yamaguchi Seishi, Tomiyasu Fusei and Takano Suju he founded the Haiku Group of Tokyo University in 1922.


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Michinoku no Sabishiro no hama no wakame yosu

at the beach
of Sabishiro in Michinoku
kelp is drifting to shore

Sabishiro is a coastal town near Mitsuzawa in Aomori prefecture
青森県三沢市. The origin of this name is not clear, but basically it means "lonely place" and the area is quite remote.
Just by using this place name the reader can imagine a lonely coastline, where wakame is swept to the beach by the strong wind. It smells of the coming spring.
Before the war, this beach and harbour was famous for catching iwashi sardines.

Sabishiro is famous for a special flight of two young Americans in 1931.

Clyde Pangborn and Hugh Herndon's Bellanca aircraft, named "Miss Veedol 「ミス・ヴィードル号」," made the first non-stop flight across the Pacific Ocean. Taking off from Sabishiro Beach in Misawa, Aomori Prefecture in Japan, and flying over 5,000 miles for 41 hours and changing the landing point due to the weather, Miss Veedol made a belly-landing on a field in East Wenatchee, Wash., on Oct. 4, 1931.

Miss Veedol

One aviator left his boots off before the flight because he wanted to lessen the plane's weight as much as possible. With the community's help, the plane was secretly remodeled to enlarge the fuel tank and also enable the pilot to drop the landing gear to gain airspeed and reduce weight.

Local residents created a hand-made wooden ramp on an 8,000-foot beach. A local Japanese woman presented a box of apples for supper during the flight.

The city found the impact of the Miss Veedol story. Receiving the apples from Pangborn, the city of Wenatchee responded with a gift of seedlings of Richard Delicious apples to Misawa. On the 40th anniversary of the flight in 1971, the main apple producing cities in both countries established their sister city relationships.

And after over 70 years have passed, the Miss Veedol story raised a big project in the Wenatchee community.

more in the Community News Online,
Vol. 63, Issue 28 / July 2, 2008

By the way, on this LINK you also find a mention of the
The Haiku Society of America Weekend June 27 - 29 in Seattle.

WKD : Wakame kelp Undaria pinnatifida

. PLACE NAMES used in Haiku  


hatsu fuji no kanashiki made ni tooki kana

first view of Mt. Fuji
until I have become so sad
at such a distance

Mountains and Haiku

kiku sakeri Too Enmei no kiku sakeri

chrysanthemum blossoms -
the chrysanthemums of
To Enmei blossom

WKD : To Enmei / Tao Yuanming  陶淵明


tamamshi no hane no midori wa Suiko yori

the green
of the Jewel Beetle's wings
since the time of Suiko . . .

Tr. Gabi Greve

. The Tamamushi Zushi 玉虫厨子 tabernacle .
and tamamushi 玉虫 / 金花虫 jewel beetle


irodori wa waga yomu hon ni hirugaeri

WKD : Birds of Autumn

濃き紅は 林檎の肩を あふれ越ゆ

WKD : Apples and Haiku


. Black Buddha Statue 黒仏 kurobotoke .


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the dried salmon
of Michinoku hang there
like wild beasts

Michinoku no sake wa minikushi ware mo Michinoku

the salmon from
Michinoku are so ugly -
I am also from Michinoku

WKD : Salmon and Haiku


source : zouhai.com

ran no na wa maririn monroo kuchi kuchi kuchi

the name of this orchid
is Marylin Monroe -
mouth mouth mouth

. WKD : Marilyn Monroe .


Japanese Reference


. Seison - translated by Gabi Greve .

Related words

***** Introducing Japanese Haiku Poets 


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