Cherry Blossoms Once Again


Photo courtesy of “Johnl”, a longtime Japan expat and friend

It’s that time again folks! Cherry blossoms, or sakura (桜) are blossoming in Japan and all over the world. Due to climate and such, cherry blossoms in Japan don’t bloom at all once. They bloom in the warmer, southern islands and then gradually the wave of blossoms works its way northwards. You can see a “weather map” of cherry blossoms here.  As of writing, the blossoms have reached the Kanto Region of Japan near Tokyo, while April they will reach the northern regions at last.

Unfortunately, I missed the cherry blossoms here locally at the University of Washington (post from last year).  This year I was on call a lot during March, and had competing activities on the weekends with the family.

Since I don’t have any good pictures of cherry blossoms, other than what John kindly allowed me to use, I wanted to make it up readers by posting a poem from the ancient Kokin Wakashū anthology. This is poem #71, under the second section on Spring:

残りなく Nokorinaku
散るぞめでたき chiru zo medetaki
桜花 sakurabana
ありて世の中 arite yo no naka
はての憂ければ hate no ukereba

Which is translated as:

So lovely falling
saving not a single petal—
oh cherry blossoms—
things that linger in this world
become hateful in the end

Happy Spring, everyone!


Author: Doug

A fellow who dwells upon the Pale Blue Dot who spends his days obsessing over things like Buddhism, KPop music, foreign languages, BSD UNIX and science fiction.

One thought on “Cherry Blossoms Once Again”

  1. Thank you for the poem. What a wonderful reminder of caducity. Nothing lasts forever: no human life, no mountain, no blossom. Year after year the cherry blossoms are telling us the deeper truth of life and death.


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