BH. John Gould Fletcher

17. Foreword to A Pepper-Pod: A Haiku Sampler, by Shôson [Kenneth Yasuda]. New York: Knopf, 1947. Reprint, Tokyo: Tuttle, 1976.


Compare 15. General praise for haiku and Yasuda’s translations. The reference to ‘the inner experience of the poet’ that ‘through a power of magic imagination’ and ‘identification’ is ‘linked to some external object or occasion’ recalls Fletcher’s Goblins and Pagodas preface of three decades earlier (4), and as in that work here he identifies such an imaginative act with the ‘doctrine’ of Zen Buddhism, which he believes haiku ‘illuminates’. Includes reference to Bashô (Ap), earlier translations of haiku in German (see D11), French (see D19 and D21, and English translation, and the recently concluded war: ‘though we have succeeded in conquering the Japanese people’, Fletcher contends, we ‘will in fact have to learn from them, as they can learn from us, now that this war is finished’.





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