Top > The path to the wisdom


Hadaka ni te Umareteki niNani fusoku
This is a haiku poem composed by the very famous poet, Issa Kobayashi.  Hadaka ni te means "with nothing on," Umaretekita ni means "because I was born," and Nani fusoku means "I don't need to ask any more."
 The general meaning of this haiku poem, which is expressed in prose, is as follows:
 Although I am awfully poor,
I should not ask anything more than what I already possess,
 Because I was originally born with nothing on.
 At the time Kobayashi wrote this haiku, he was leading an extremely impoverished life.  Although it appear that he was not discontent with his situation, on one occasion, a feeling of disparity, may have crossed his mind.  Yet once he realized there was no sense in lamenting over the state of his life circumstances, he perhaps scolded himself for this weakness of mind by writing this haiku poem.
 Kobayashi also composed haiku poems experiencing his kindness for tiny insects and other small creatures.  This shows to the readers his tender characteristic.  The haiku poem referred to above, however, shows that he was a person with a strong will, which enables him to continue writing haiku without being disheartened by poverty.  He would allow nothing to distract him from being a haiku composer.
 I have heard that when school children discover that they have left behind after school, it is common for them not to go back and get it, and schools end up in the custody of many lost articles, which no children are willing to claim.
 I think that the reason for this is that today the parents in general are so well off that can afford to buy their children most of the things that the children so expectantly ask for.  When children find that they have left an article at school, they do not think of getting it back but rather coaxing their parents into buying a new or even "better" as a replacement.  What opinion would Kobayashi have on the children's waste of things like this?  To make matters worse, grown-ups, who should know better, are also anxious too much to gratify one material desire after another, even when it is not really needed.
Issa Kobayashi feared that his resolution to see into the heart of haiku might be shaken by such pertinacious desires.  That was why he could bear up with a strong will under destination and continue to be a devout haiku poet for his whole life.