Poems are like islands in the sea of words through which we swim every day. We take comfort and pleasure in them, but they can also sometimes challenge us, provoke, us, or wake us up to see things in new ways. The enlightening art of poetry has been a part of our publishing program from the very beginning.
Hakuin Zenji, also known as Hakuin Ekaku (16891769), is often referred to as the "father" of the Japanese Zen Rinzai school. His reforms revitalized the school, ensuring its endurance even to our own day. A fiery and dynamic teacher and renowned artist, Hakuin reemphasized the importance of zazen, or sitting meditation, in his teaching. This intimate self-portrait of the Zen master includes reminiscences from his childhood, an account… Read More
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Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827), along with Basho and Buson, is considered one of the three greatest haiku poets of Japan, known for his attention to poignant detail and his playful sense of humor. Issa's most-loved work, The Spring of My Life, is an autobiographical sketch of linked prose and haiku in the tradition of Basho's famous Narrow Road to the Interior. In addition to The Spring… Read More
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