January 6, 2017

Poetry Friday--Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu

Akemashite Omedetou Gozaimasu = Happy New Year! This is the eighth year I'm participating in a New Year's postcard exchange (Nengajo). Before this year, the exchange was arranged through a international group of haiku poets. Sadly, that group is no longer a group (at least not currently). Jone MacCulloch, has stepped in to organize an exchange of poems from Poetry Friday participants. Thanks Jone! By now, everyone should have received their postcard from me.

I am continuing with my New Year's haiku and I'm using the Chinese zodiac animal for 2017--the rooster. The rooster of 2017 is also known as the "fire rooster." Learn more here.

My haiku includes a reference to the rooster, also fire, and, it mentions "first dawn." "First" implies the New Year without coming right out and saying it. These type of seasonal shortcut words are known as kigo. Other examples of kigo: daffodils = spring, barbecue = summer, pumpkins = fall, snow = winter.

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

The background image is taken from a painting by Mihály Munkácsy (1844-1900), titled "Yawning Apprentice." The teapot is contemporary. I added the rainbow coloring to make it appear dawn-like. The red of the lettering is for good luck (although red tends to bleed, so it probably wasn't a wise decision to use it).

The Nengajo is a big deal in Japan, here's a site that explains more.

This was posted on New Year's Day, in an article on Japanese New Year's traditions, published in The Mainichi:
And in the Tokyo district of Nihonbashi, known as the birthplace of Japan's postal system, a ceremony was held Sunday morning to mark the start of the delivery of New Year's greeting cards. About 40 mail carriers departed the branch to deliver New Year's cards.
Have a good year, everyone! Start it off right with poetry being gathered by Linda at Teacher Dance.

I have plenty of postcards to spare, so if you'd like one, let me know.

25 comments:

  1. I received your card and I appreciated the thought and planning. I like the whimsy of the Rooster teapot. I'm going to check out the painter via your link after I finish commenting. I hope you don't mind that I shared your card on Twitter.

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    1. I don't mind your sharing, Brenda. I'm happy you found it worth sharing!

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  2. Happy New Year, Diane! Of course, I love this whole post. And I must confess I've not yet sent any of my postcards yet... we were traveling over the last part of the holidays, and I'm still catching up. But I'm getting there. Thanks for the Japanese links!

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    1. Jone gave us til the end of the month, so you still have plenty of time!

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  3. Wonderful haiku. Thanks so much for the explanation - I love seeing the process behind a poem.

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    1. I do, too, that's why I'll always share my process.

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  4. I celebrated new year's with a temple visit in Nagasaki! New year's definitely is the big holiday in Japan, such an amazing experience!! Happy New year!!

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    1. I've traveled with you through your blog, Jane!

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  5. What an interestingly wonderful tradition.
    And i have to say that the rooster teapot caught me, an unexpected surprise in the poem and in the image.

    happy new year.

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    1. I like to add a surprise wherever possible!

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  6. Thanks for sending me a card! I've added it to my Poetry Friday celebration today.

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    1. I love how the P.F. folks all share!

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  7. This is the first time I've heard about this Japanese tradition. It sounds wonderful (and you know I'm a big fan of post-cards)! It's been fun reading several PF posts about the postcards sent and received today.

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    1. I'm sure there will be more shared since we have the whole month in which to send out postcards.

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  8. Thanks for the explanation of kigo. In this year of the rooster, I'm thinking about ordering a new batch of chicks!

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    1. If you order a new batch of chicks, I'll think about sending out my poultry book! I need some nudging.

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  9. I loved receiving my card, and the extra information about it, and this tradition, too. I guess it is similar to sending cards at holidays, here.

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    1. Except that our holiday cards don't include original poetry!

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  10. I enjoyed the poem, images and your thoughtful explanation of your process. I learned much.

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    1. Thanks, Kay! I'm always spouting off about something!

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  11. I always learn so much from reading about your process, Diane. What a great tradition this post card sharing is!

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    1. I've enjoyed the past 8 years of it. It's too bad the haiku poetry community couldn't continue it this year.

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  12. As a recipient of your postcard poetry, I want to thank you for sharing a beautiful piece of artwork, mixing it with a contemporary twist, adding a wealth of information for a backstory, and creating a wonderful haiku. I have learned so much from you, Diane, about the art of haiku writing. Your work inspires me.

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    1. I hope you'll continue to learn about haiku. The best way to do it is to read and write haiku!

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  13. I had never heard nengago before....but I have added it to my life. What a beautiful tradition. I appreciate you explaining it and sending such a thoughtful card. My cards are supposed to arrive today...so I hope to get them out to you all by Monday.

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