Makoto+ members have access to new haiku (like this page) every Friday with audio, explanation, and vocabulary notes. Culture and language go hand in hand, and this is especially true with haiku. Enjoy!

夏嵐なつあらし 机上きじょう白紙はくし くす

natsu arashi / kijou no hakushi / tobi tsukusu

A summer storm / the papers upon my desk / are blown away

Key Haiku Terms

季語 kigo seasonal words - Within the poem, at least one word or phrase should symbolize one of the four seasons. 

切れ字 kireji cutting words - These are small words that often function as a placeholder so the verse has the right number of moras.  They also function to give a certain emotional or sentimental flavor to the poem.

夏嵐なつあらし 机上きじょう白紙はくし くす



  • 夏嵐 summer storm [夏 (summer); 嵐 (storm)]
  • 机上の on the desk; [机 (desk); 上の~ (on ~; above ~); 上 (above; up) + の is a modifying particle that connects the modifying (机上) and the modified (白紙); 机上 is not a normally used word, but it is used in formal writing or concise poems and such. 机の上の (白紙) would be what is used for “(blank papers) on the desk”]
  • 白紙 blank papers [白 (white); 紙 (paper); it could be “white paper”, but the author being a famous poet it is easily understood as “blank papers”]
  • 飛び尽くす are all blown away [飛び (to fly; to jump; to hop); 尽くす (to exhaust; to run out; to run out of; to devote; used as a suffix to mean for “completely” or “to the point of exhaustion”); “masu-stem verb + 尽くす”; the verb combination of 飛び尽す is not so commonly used. One normal expression example would be 全部飛んだ (all flew away), but the not-so-common wording gives a poetic interest.]  
  • 夏、暑い日に窓を開けていると、突然涼しい風が吹いてきて、机の上にあった白い紙が全部飛んで行ってしまいました。

    On a hot, summer day, when one opens a window, a sudden cool breeze blows in, and the blank papers that were on his desk suddenly fly away.

    More Haiku by Masaoka Shiki

    Do you enjoy this sort of lesson page? Makoto+ members get a new haiku every Friday, and Shogun Makoto+ members have complete access to all haiku lessons.

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