the lengthening shadow
of a scarecrow
Comment: a 4-6-4 syllable haiku that conveys a sense of calmness and melancholy in a rather classic context. The light and pleasing afternoon breeze (hirusugi no kaze 昼過ぎの風) blows through the trees and then disperses into the open fields of the countryside, while the scarecrow (kakashi かかし) keeps standing alone to protect them. We are in autumn (aki 秋), so there is less and less light; its tall shadow extends on the ground as if the scarecrow itself wanted to continue its work in spite of the imminent nightfall. A poem full of wabi 侘び and shiori しをり with simple yet deeply evocative tones. The lack of any cutting mark (kireji 切れ字) gives continuity and cyclicity to the whole scene.