Basho’s Frog and Simon’s Cat

In 1686, the great poet Matsuo Basho wrote a hokku (haiku) that became instantly famous, and remains so to this day. It has been variously translated, but this seems to be an accepted version:

the old pond

a frog jumps in

the sound of water

Some translations have the last line as “the splash of water” or even “plop!” which I actually like best, because it makes me smile.

I couldn’t help but think of Basho’s frog when I saw this cartoon by Simon Tofield, and so I have written a haiku for Simon’s Cat:

cluttered back yard

a frog peeks out

the pouncing cat

7 thoughts on “Basho’s Frog and Simon’s Cat

  1. Pingback: Art of Haiku: Conveying a vivid message in 17 syllables | Discover Japan

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