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KOBAYASHI ISSA Poetry
TRANSLATED BY ROBERT HASS

Even with insects—
some can sing,
some can’t.

All the time I pray to Buddha
I keep on
killing mosquitoes.

Goes out,
comes back—
the love life of a cat.

Mosquito at my ear—
does he think
I’m deaf?

The snow is melting
and the village is flooded
with children.

Under the evening moon
the snail
is stripped to the waist.

Read these today …
Source: The Essential Haiku: Versions of Basho Buson and Issa (The Ecco Press, 1994)

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