Naviarhaiku201 – In the calm stillness

For this week’s challenge I chose a poem written by one of my favourite haiku writers: Taneda Santōka.

“Santoka is considered a unique proponent of “free-style” haiku poetry, a mode that abandoned much of the customary form and subject matter of traditional haiku in favor of a direct and unadorned depiction of human experience. A wandering poet and ascetic Zen priest for the last fifteen years of his life, Santoka emphasized many of the essential qualities of Zen Buddhism in his verse, including mujo (impermanence), the necessity of sabi (solitude), the importance of simplicity in life, and the pervasive sadness that accompanies all human affairs. Many of his poems point toward the Zen goal of overcoming this ubiquitous melancholy by achieving spiritual enlightenment and serenity. To this view Santoka added his concern with what James Abrams called “the vital necessity of movement and the partial release it brings to the anguish of the soul.” (continue reading at

Seven days to make music inspired by Santoka’s poem: more info at:


Deadline: 15th November 2017

Poem by Taneda Santōka

Picture by Micah Hallahan