Lauter Brunnenfrösche

der ewige Streit
wer Recht hat wer gut ist
nichts als Gequake

Ikkyū Sōjun (1394-1481):

[In the midst of happiness there is trouble in Ikkyū’s school.]
Each frog fighting for respect at the bottom of the well;
Day and night busy thinking about the details of the scriptures;
Right and wrong, self and other, fussing away a whole life.


Arntzen, Sonja: Ikkyū Sōjun. A Zen Monk an his Poetry. Occasional Paper No. 4. Program in East Asian Studies. Western Washington State College. Washington 1973. 98f.


die Tempelfliegen
verdrehen die Pfötchen wie

Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827):

The flies in the temple
imitate the hands
of the people with prayer beads.

The Essential Haiku. Versions of Basho, Buson, and Issa. Edited and with Verse Translations by Robert Hass. New York: HarperCollins 1994. 188.