Friday, November 22, 2013

Butterfly Dream: Castle Haiku by Robert Kania

English Original

ruins of a castle
wild flowers
in the ballroom

Second Place, 42nd Caribbean Kigo Kukai, May 2013 

Robert Kania

Chinese Translation (Traditional)


Chinese Translation (Simplified)


Bio Sketch

Robert Kania lives in Warsaw, Poland. He began writing poetry in 2011. His  haiku and haiga have appeared in The Mainichi, Asahi Haikuist Network, World Haiku Review, KUZU, Diogen, DailyHaiga and World Haiku Association. He  is a co-editor (with Krzysztof Kokot) of the European Quarterly Kukai. His  blog is:


  1. The contrasts between the two parts of Robert's well-crafted haiku demonstrates the erosive and intrusive power of nature.

  2. The type of cutting employed in Robert's haiku belongs to type II.

    Below is a relevant excerpt from my 'To the Lighthouse: Three Formulations about the Use of Cutting:'

    Type II Formulation: "Buson and Shiki," pp. 410-11

    …The more complex uses of kireji that come into prominence later on break down this linguistically confined structure of the sentence unit in favor of freer poetic play across the gap made by ya, other cutting-words, or syntactic breaks which cleave the poem in two …

    Later in the seventeenth century when Danrin poets formulated their ideas about kireji, the discussion might be presented in terms of Yin-Yang metaphysics or simply in terms of a discrimination set up within a hokku between a "this" opposed to a "that." A work from 1680 put it in a refreshingly slangy way:

    The kireji is that which clearly expresses a division of Yin and Yang. Yin and Yang mean the existence of an interesting confrontation within a poem (okashiku ikku no uchi ni arasoi aru o iu nari). For instance, something or other presented in a hokku is that?-no, it's not that but this, etc. 46

    Eisenstein, circa 1929, would have replaced Yin with thesis and Yang with antithesis and cast the whole matter in the mold of his peculiar dialectic, but he would certainly have gone along with this Japanese poet's notion of arasoi, "confrontation." "By what, then, is montage characterized and, consequently, its cell -- the shot?" he asked himself in "The Cinematographic Principle and the Ideogram." "By collision. By the conflict of two pieces in opposition to each other. By conflict. By collision." And the phrases of hokku were, he insisted, "montage phrases," and hence they generated their meaning by a like dynamic process. 47