WKD - Nobo san Shiki


he changes his name
like a career fish . . .
Nobo san


Masaoka Tsunenori 正岡常規
Tokoronosuke 処之助 as a child

Noboru 升 as a school boy and student
this name was amicably shortened to

He was fond of baseball as a student and made a joke of his name

nobooru 野球(のぼーる)"baseball"
野球 is usually read yakyuu and is the Japanese for the game of baseball.
booru is a Japanese way to pronounce BALL.

CLICK for more photos
shiki 子規 Cuculus poliocephalus

He took the haiku name of SHIKI 子規 when he was editor of the haiku magazine HOTOTOGISU, because of tuberculosis, he would spit blood. The inside of the mouth of the cuckoo is so red that it looks like blood when the bird is singing. He started using this name when the tuberculosis hit him.

The word SHIKI can also mean
"The four seasons 四季" in Japanese.

For a while, he used the name
Ochi Tokoronosuke 越智処之助(おち ところのすけ)

Nobo Guide
Haiku Mailing List

On his sickbed, a friend taught him how to paint. This sharpened his eyes even more for SHASEI, to sketch from nature.
And this in turn sharpened his eye for haiku, to see the little things in life and report them in simple language ...
He encouraged people, so not only poets could write haiku, but anyone with a keen eye and a good vocabulary.

almost like TWITTER
he encourages folks to communicate ...
Nobo san


SHIKI, Masaoka Shiki
正岡 子規(まさおか しき)

(1867, October 14 - 1902, September 19)

3 kigo for mid-autumn / September 19

Shiki ki 子規忌 memorial day of Shiki

hechima-ki 糸瓜忌 (へちまき) Sponge-gourd anniversary
This naming stems from the sponge-gourd (hechima), used as a medicineal plant against phlegm for tuberculosis. He used the word HECHIMA in many of his haiku.

Dassai Ki 獺祭忌(だっさいき)Dassai memorial day
Otter Festival Anniversary
He referred to himself as dassai, and published "Dassai Sho-oku Haiwa 獺祭書屋俳話" in Meiji 26 (1893).
"Haiku Talks from the Otter's Den"

CLICK for original link

Dassai is a name of the Otter Festival, also an ancient name of part of the prefecture Yamaguchi. Fishotters catch fish and place them on the riverside, almost as if they wanted to show them as offerings. This custom has been the subject of many old poems.

Masaoka saw himself as one who scattered his books around on the floor of his small room, just like the otter spreads out the fish he caught. His room was always cluttered and it was hard to walk around in it.
He kept notes and collected many words in small "encyclopedias" for himself as reference to improve his vocabulary and thus his poetry. Even when forced to lie down almost all the time, he had books scattered all around his pillow.

He even called his home
Hermitage of the Otter 獺祭魚庵 Dassaigyo An
and he was the" scatterer of books"
獺祭書屋主人 Dassai Sho-oku Shujin

The details about his work are here
. Masaoka Shiki 正岡子規
and Matsuyama City 松山

uchi hareshi sabishisa mizu ya Dassai ki

Kubota Mantaro 万太郎


. kigo for early spring  

kawauso uo o matsuru 獺魚を祭る (かわうそうおをまつる)
otter festival

oso no matsuri 獺の祭(おそのまつり)
..... dassai 獺祭(だっさい)
..... dassaigyo 獺祭魚(だっさいぎょ)

One of the 72 seasonal points of the lunar calendar.

shichijuuni koo 七十二候 72 seasonal points


- Shared by Joys of Japan, September 2012 -

X-Ray Clinic
as I wait for my turn
I read Shiki poems

Sandip Sital Chauhan

on his lips
names for the colors of red ~
Shiki Day

Elaine Andre


Memorial Days of Haiku Poets

Shusseuo, shusse uo 出世魚 "career fish"

One more from my archives, June 2010:

. "Twitter is like haiku,
It is so Japanese."

Rocky Eda, manager for Digital Garage




Gabi Greve - Basho archives said...

iwa tsutsuji somuru namida ya hototogishu

rock azaleas
colored by his tears -
this hototogisu

Matsuo Basho
Tr. Gabi Greve

Written in 寛文7年, Basho age 24.

The inside of the mouth of the cuckoo is so red that it looks like blood when the bird is singing.

Gabi Greve - Kappa said...

- Otter 獺魚 kawauso -
and Kappa legends

Gabi Greve said...

Larry Bole wrote:
Shiki and baseball

(the following info is from the book "Baseball Haiku," edited and translated by Cor van den Heuvel & Nanae Tamuru):
Shiki loved baseball and played it in prep school. He wrote the world's first baseball haiku. He was elected to the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame in 2002. Here is one among the baseball haiku he wrote:

haru kaze ya mari o tagenaki kusa no haru

spring breeze
this grassy field makes me
want to play catch

-- Shiki, trans. van den Heuvel & Tamuru

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