Willow robes (yanagi gasane)


Willow robes (yanagi gasane)

***** Location: Japan
***** Season: Late Spring
***** Category: Humanity


In the Heian period, seasonal cloths were quite important.
The willow robes come with various kigo:

Willow robes, yanagi gasane 柳重
..... yanagi goromo 柳衣(やなぎごろも)
willow silk, yanagi no kinu 柳のきぬ(やなぎのきぬ)、
"flower willow robe" hanayaki goromo 花柳衣(はなやぎごろも)
"green willow robe" aoyagi goromo,青柳衣(あおやぎごろも)


Other flower robes used as spring kigo

cherry blossom robe, sakura goromo 桜衣 さくらごろも
..... sakura gasane 桜重(さくらがさね)

azalea robe, tsutsuji no koromo 躑躅の衣
..... mochi tsutsuji もち躑躅(もちつつじ)
"rock azalea" iwa tsutsuji 岩躑躅(いわつつじ)
white azalea, shiro tsutsuji 白躑躅(しろつつじ)

yellow mountain rose robes 山吹衣 (やまぶきごろも)
yamabuki goromo

..... hanayamabuki 花山吹(はなやまぶき)
..... aoyamabuki 青山吹(あおやまぶき)
kigo for late spring
. . . CLICK here for Photos !

robes worn for cherry blossom viewing
..... hana goromo 花衣, hanami goromo 花見衣(はなみごろも), hanami kosode 花見小袖(はなみこそで), hana no tamoto 花の袂(はなのたもと), hanami ishoo 花見衣裳(はなみいしょう)
"sleeves for the blossoms", hana no sode 花の袖(はなのそで)

robes for spring, haru goromo 春衣
..... haru irui 春衣(はるい)



88a28c 柳鼠(やなぎねずみ)

Yanagi Kasane, willow layers

Examples of "Kasane" waring different tiers of colors
This list also explains the months for each flower robe.


Willow Tree as Kigo

Worldwide use

Things found on the way

haiku and artwork by Fay Aoyagi

Fay Aoyagi's second haiku collection, 'In Borrowed Shoes' was published by Blue Willow Press.
Her first book, 'Chrysanthemum Love' is still available.


aoyagi ni koomori tsutau yuubae ya


A bat flying
Along the green willows
In the evening glory!

(Tr. Blyth)

According to Shiki, this haiku comes from a 'Kuawase' that Kikaku made with Sampuu, which would be, according to my research, either "The Rustic Haiku Contest" ("Inaka no Kuawase") or "The Evergreen Haiku Contest" ("Tokiwaya no Kuawase").

Shiki considers this haiku an example of moving beyond the Danrin School, beyond "the mere play of words." Shiki says "their humour was in their taste, a high-class humour" [Translations in quotes by Blyth].

bats flutter
along the green willows -
bright sunset

(Tr. Gabi Greve)
Seeing the bats as courtiers in their black robes and aoyagi as the ladies in their spring robes.
Discussing the translation of this haiku in detail here.
Compiled by Larry Bole

The real meaning might be completely different.
See this LINK for more on the Willow Tree Meanig
Willow Tree as Kigo


nioi aru kinu mo tatamazu haru no kure

The scented clothes
still not put away,
twilight in spring.

Tr. Sawa and Shiffert

The clothes incensed
Left unfolded;
Spring evening!

To burn incense to perfume one's clothes is one of long-standing personal habits to be well-groomed.
The person who has just returned home steeps himself in the sentiment enchanted with spring evening and he neglects to do a duty to change his clothes and hold the incensed clothes. It is neither cold nor hot and the time somewhat languid. The atmosphere of the room is beginning to be filled with a lingering perfume of the clothes he wears.
A mental weariness, a melancholic mood caused by a spring day form the basis of the Haiku. What if something has happened to him? And it's unknown whether it is a good thing or not. The depth of the Haiku may lie in its resonance note that we could catch if we would try.
- Tr. and comment : Kumano Shoji

I can also imagine Buson having spent a day with a lovely lady at some hanami blossom viewing party and still enjoying the scent of her fragrance while back home . . .

. Yosa Buson 与謝蕪村 in Edo .

Related words

***** Azalea (Japan) Tsutsuji, Satsuki, Oomurasaki

***** Cherry Blossoms (sakura, Japan)

***** Yellow Mountain Rose (yamabuki, Japan)

***** Yellow Willow (yanagi, Japan)

More about
Kimono of Japan and Haiku 日本の着物

Kigo for Spring



Unknown said...

David 先生は帷子をsummer kimonoで括っていますが、日本人としては違った受け止め方をしたいですね。


Gabi Greve - Basho archives said...

Oku no Hosomichi - Matsuo Basho

and a hokku by Sora 曽良

kasane to wa yae nadeshiko no naru beshi

Basho and Children