Sugiyama Sanpu


Sugiyama Sanpu 杉山杉風 (Sampu)
Sugiyama Sanpuu, Sugiyama Sanpû
(1647 - 1732)
He died 享保17年(1732年) 6月13日 at age 86.

source : fusimiin/basyo/monjin10

Koiya Sanpuu 鯉屋杉風 Koi-ya Sanpu (Sampu)

hirune shite te no ugoki yamu uchiwa kana

while I take a nap
my hand stops to move
the handfan . . .

Je fais la sieste.
La main tenant l' éventail.
source : Saijiki francophone

Sanpu was born in Edo, Nihonbashi, Odawara town 江戸日本橋小田原町.
His various haikai names
採荼庵 - 五雲亭 - 蓑翁

Sanpu was an official fish merchant of the Bakufu government in Edo. He was also an ardent haikai poet and supported Matsuo Basho in many ways, helping him to establish his Basho school of haikai.
He was one of the Basho jittetsu 芭蕉十哲 10 most important followers :

. Shoofuu 蕉風 Shofu, Basho-style haiku .
shoomon 蕉門 Shomon, Basho students, Basho's school
The 10 most important disciples of Matsuo Basho.

Sanpu provided the Basho-An in Fukagawa for Basho to live in.

When starting out to the long and dangerous trip of "Oku no Hosomichi", Basho wrote this famous haiku in his honor :

yuku haru ya tori naki uo no me wa namida

spring is leaving ..
birds sing and the eyes of a fish
are full of tears

fish is haiku shorthand for the nickname of his friend, the fish dealer.
sakana or uo, fish, can be singular or plural in the Japanese language.

tori ga naku is a normal expression for the birds singing. It is not really "cry".
This bird of spring is the hototogisu with his gentle warbling.
Basho uses the Chinese character 啼 for the sound of a bird, not the character 泣く for weeping, crying.
And what kind of fish is this? Maybe the sawara 鰆, Spanish mackerel, which has the character for SPRING 春 in its name?
Or shirauo, 白魚 the white fish, which is a delicacy of this region and was a favorite dish of Basho himself.
uo no me 魚の目, the "eye of a fish" is also an expression for a corn on the sole of the foot. Basho is maybe thinking about the long journey ahead and the many corns he has to tend to on the way.

More about this haiku and allusions to his friends by Basho is here :
. parting spring, yuku haru 行く春 .

yuku haru ya tori naki uo no me wa namida

spring is leaving ..
birds sing
tears in the eyes of (my friend called) Fish

This hokku even made it to a stamp.

Oku no Hosomichi - - - - Station 2 - Departure 旅立 at Senju - - -
. Matsuo Basho 松尾芭蕉 - Archives of the WKD .


Sanpu and Kikaku
In 1672, prior to taking his formal penname, Basho arrived in Edo and lived near the Nihonbashi Uogashi for a time.

The first bonito of the year
Amazingly fresh
They would have been alive when they left Kamakura

This is a haiku poem in which Basho describes the first bonito catches of the year. Basho lived in the residence of Sugiyama Kensui, a haiku poet known as Ozawa Senpu and a carp wholesaler whose business was named Koiya. Kensui’s eldest son, Sanpu, supported Basho and came to be known as one of the master’s ten most prominent students.
Sanpu has been considered Basho’s greatest benefactor. The wholesale carp business, particularly prosperous at that time, made it possible for him to provide such great support. Koiya maintained a carp farm in Fukagawa. Basho later lived in a remodeled cottage that had previously been the caretaker’s lodge at Koiya’s carp farm. The cottage was named Basho-an after a basho (banana) tree growing near the cottage, and Basho adopted the same for his penname.

... On March 27, 1689, Basho set out for the deep north. He traveled up the Sumida River to Senju, where he took his leave from those who had accompanied him on the first part of his journey. It was then that Basho composed the following poem for Sanpu, who had supported him for so many years.

Passing spring
Birds are crying
And the fish are in tears

It is said that Sanpu tried to prevent Basho from traveling north out of concern for the chill in the early spring air. The cordial relationship between Basho and Sanpu was likely the reason Basho composed this poem. Or, perhaps by mentioning fish, he may have intended to make a clear break from his youth spent at the Uogashi.

Sanpu was the first son of a carp wholesaler and purveyor to the shogunate. Along with Takarai Kikaku (1661–1707) and Hattori Ransetsu (1654–1707), Sanpu was a leading haiku poet of the Basho school. Among his students,
Basho trusted Sanpu most for his coherent and sound style, unaffected by trends, as well as for his personality.

Persistently I stare
At the moon
Still I cannot hear

Two nights before a full moon
Yet, the moon is too beautiful
To get tired of looking at

Unexpected dismay
A tooth came out for the first time
Autumn wind

As the first poem above would indicate, Sanpu suffered severe hearing loss. It is said that Basho was very upset with Kikaku for teasing Sanpu that he would never keep up with the world because of his hearing disability.
Sanpu also studied Japanese painting at the Kano school, and his art is characterized by realism. Of the many portraits of Basho, that by Sanpu is believed to be the most faithful portrayal of the haiku master.

The farewell note Basho wrote to Sanpu before his death shows the warm personal relationship between the two:

I tell you, Sanpu, that I shall never forget the generous support I have received from you over the years, even after my body no longer exists. It is regrettable for both of us that my life is ending in an unexpected place and therefore I cannot say farewell to you in person. I hope you will keep working on your haiku and that it provides entertainment for you in your old age.
source : kiifc.kikkoman.co.jp !

- quote
Deaf haiku poet in the Edo period
SUGIYAMA Sampu (1647-1732) is known as a patron of MATSUO Basho (1644-1694), one of the best haiku poets in the first half of the Edo period (1600-1868).

. . . He was deaf and weak by birth. Though it is unknown when he followed Basho to study haiku, he was one of Basho's ten best disciples.
- source : deafjapan.blogspot.jp


observance kigo for late-summer

Sanpuuki 杉風忌 Sanpu memorial day
Koiya Ki 鯉屋忌 Memorial Day of the Carp Dealer

The 13th day of the sixth lunar month, now in June 13.

source : www.weblio.jp


sutto kite sode ni iritaru hotaru kana

into my kimono sleeve crawls
a firefly . . .








All of his haiku :
source : haiku/sanpuu.html


Had it not been for Sanpu, Basho would never have had Basho-An in Fukagawa.
Basho-An had in fact been a caretaker's lodge at a Carp Farm owned by Sanpu's Family's Business, Koiya.
source : only1tanuki


Edo's Water Supply
source : edomatsu/josui


- Matsuo Basho wrote this at the death of the father of Sanpu,
Sugiyama Senpuu 杉山仙風 Sugiyama Senpu

tamuke keri imo wa hachisu ni nitaru tote

here is my offering -
the flowers of yam
look almost like lotus

Since it was not the season for lotus flowers, the normal offering for a grave, Basho had to make do with what was at hand. And hopefully the always light-hearted Senpu would accept his sincere offering.

The date of this event is not clear.


Japanese Reference


Related words

***** Introducing Japanese Haiku Poets 



Gabi Greve - Basho archives said...

Basho wrote

ide ya ware yoki nuno kitari semi-goromo

come look at
the new summer robe I wear -
my Semigoromo
Tr. Gabi Greve

Written in summer of 1687 貞亨4年夏
Sugiyama Sanpu had sent Basho a new katabira robe for summer and this was his thank-you hokku.

semigoromo 蝉衣 a very thin cloth for summer robes, as light as the wings of a cicada.
lit. "cicada robe".

Gabi Greve - Basho archives said...

Matsuo Basho and the Great Bridge of Fukagawa 深川大橋
2 hokku .

about Fukagawa in Edo