Snipe (shigi)



Snipe (shigi)

***** Location: Japan
***** Season: Various, see below
***** Category: Animal


CLICK for more snipe photos.

A Snipe is any of nearly 20 very similar wading bird species in three genera in the family Scolopacidae.
They characterised by a very long slender bill and cryptic plumage. The Gallinago snipes have a nearly worldwide distribution, the Lymnocryptes Jack Snipe is restriced to Asia and Europe and the Coenocorypha snipes are restriced to New Zealand. The three species of painted snipe are not closely related to these, and are placed in their own family, the Rostratulidae.
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


There are many kigo with various types of this autumn bird.

snipe, shigi 鷸(しぎ)
snipe in the weeds, kusa shigi 草鴫(くさしぎ)
snipe on the beach, iso shigi 磯鴫(いそしぎ)
snipe on the sandy beach 浜鴫(はましぎ)

"crane snipe", tsuru shigi 鶴鴫(つるしぎ)
"snipe with red legs" aka ashi shigi 赤脚鴫(あかあししぎ)
"snipe with blue legs", ao ashi shigi青脚鴫(あおあししぎ)

"snipe with bent legs", sori ashi shigi
"snipe with bent bill", soriha shigi 反嘴鴫(そりはしぎ)

CLICK for more photos
"bill snipe", shaku shigi 杓鴫(しゃくしぎ)

spatula-shaped bill snipe, hera shigi 箆鴫(へらしぎ)

"old woman" snipe 姥鴫(うばしぎ)

snipes born in this year, toonen shigi

Click for Kyoto Lady Snipe
"Kyoto Lady" snipe, kyoojo shigi 京女鴫(きょうじょしぎ)

mountain snipe, yamashigi 山鴫(やましぎ)
.. boto shigi ぼと鴫(ぼとしぎ)
snipe in the rice fields, paddy shigi, ta shigi 田鴫(たしぎ)
snipe in the wild fields 鴫野(しぎの)

blue snipe, aoshigi 青鴫(あおしぎ)
"makerel snipe", saba shigi 鯖鴫(さばしぎ)

small snipe, little snipe, koshigi 小鴫(こしぎ)
"treasure snipe", tama shigi 玉鴫(たましぎ)

snipes "reciting sutras", shigi no kangin

snipes cleaning feathers, shigi no hagaki
"scratching one hundred wings" momo hagaki
..... kazu kaku 数掻く(かずかく)


SNIPE kigo for other seasons

Worldwide use

Things found on the way

SNIPES in many languages
(Chinese, Vietnamese ...)

snipe proper (genus Gallinago)

オオジシギ, (大地鷸 or 大地鴫)
ō ji-shigi : 'large ground shigi'

ハリオシギ, (針尾鷸 or 針尾鴫)
hari-o shigi : 'needle-tailed shigi'

チュウジシギ, (中地鷸 or 中地鴫)
chū ji-shigi :'medium ground shigi'

and more
 © www.cjvlang.com / Scolopacinae


ooiso ya haya asameshi de shigi no tatsu

on a large beach
early risers for breakfast...

uwasa sureba shigi no tachi keri yûsuzumi

speaking of the devil
a snipe takes flight...
evening cool

yû harai shigi jû bakari tachi ni keri
yuuharai ya shiki too bakari tachi ni keri

evening's shrine boats--
about ten snipes
stand guard

This haiku refers to a Shinto purification ritual that takes place in Sixth Month in the traditional Japanese calendar (harai, nagoshi). One of the observances is to launch special shrine boats in water. Shinji Ogawa adds that the most popular forms of the ritual involve (1) entering a shrine through the chinowa (a large ring made of woven reeds) or (2) going to a river and releasing a paper boat containing a paper doll (katashiro). As the doll drifts away it is thought to take "all unclean things with it."

Issa, Tr. David Lanoue

uwasa sureba shigi no tachi keri yuusuzumi

. WKD : Kobayashi Issa 小林一茶 in Edo .

Ōiso, Ooiso (大磯町, Ōiso-machi) is a town located in Naka District, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan.
© More in the WIKIPEDIA !


Temples visited by
. Matsuo Basho 松尾芭蕉 - Archives of the WKD .

At temple Hozo-Ji 法蔵寺 (Hoozooji, Hozoji)

At the temple there is now a memorial stone for the snipe 鴫塚

笈の小文 - Oi no Kobumi - Notes from my Knapsack
. Matsuo Basho 松尾芭蕉 - Archives of the WKD .
written in 1688 貞亨5年秋 / or 貞享元年(1684)

kari ato ya wase katakata no shigi no koe

harvested rice fields -
in the stiff stubbles
the call of snipes

Tr. Gabi Greve

固固 KATAKATA, stiff, hard, or 片々, is also a pun with the sound KATAKATA - 方々, - katagata ... all these people.

In the rice fields at the Treasury of the Dharma Temple

after the reaping--
from the side of a field of early rice
a snipe's call

Tr. Barnhill

Barnhill notes that this haiku "draws on a famous waka by Saigyoo:

kokoro naki mi ni mo aware wa shirarekeri
shigi tatsu sawa no aki no yuugure

Even one who is
free of passions
feels such sorrow:
a marsh where a snipe rises
into autumn evening

Tr. Barnhill

.  Basho and Saigyo 芭蕉と西行法師 .


achira muki ni shigi mo tachitari aki no kure

yuki no kure shigi wa modotte iru yoo na

shigi tooku kuwa susugu mizu no uneri kana

The snipe farther and farther away,
The ripples
Of the washed hoe.

Tr. Blyth

nochi no tsuki shigi tatsu ato no mizu no naka

the "next full moon"
is reflected in the water
after the snipe flew away

. WKD : Yosa Buson 与謝蕪村 in Edo .
Buson also shows an allusion to the waka of Saigyo.

. WKD : nochi no tsuki 後の月 "next full moon" .
One month after the meigetsu, now october, celebrated on day 13 though.

Related words

***** Summer Purification Ceremony (nagoshi, harai)

***** Voices of an animal (marumaru no koe) and haiku

***** Birds of Winter Japan




1 comment:

anonymous said...

kokoro naki
mi ni mo aware wa
shigi tatsu sawa no
aki no yugure



Is it really a snipe? Miner (1968) retranslates the poem himself and calls it a longbill. William LaFleur (1983) calls it a woodcock. Paul Schalow (1990) sees sandpipers. Meredith McKinney (1998) calls it a curlew.

... there are many kinds of shigi. It suggests the ta-shigi, or "rice-paddy" shigi. That is called in English the common snipe. Other types of shigi are called this or that sandpiper, including the iso-shigi, literally "coastal" shigi, or common sandpiper. The family of birds described as shigi seems equivalent to that called sandpiper in English. So that appears valid as well, but perhaps the word summons images of a beach rather than a marsh. The daishaku-shigi is the Eurasian curlew, which is what is typically meant in English by a curlew, so that seems valid, too. The yama-shigi, or mountain shigi, is the Eurasian woodcock, but, as both names indicate it's not a water bird, so perhaps it should be disqualified. I wasn't able to find a Japanese bird called a longbill, although I know that birds by that name exist.

A Wisp of Snipes:
Translating Medieval Japanese Poetry
by Paul S. Atkins
Simply Haiku Autumn 2009