Zen In Hand

March 16, 2018.  This poem emerged while studying Zen poets – mostly male, but one female poet made the syllabus.  Otagaki Rengetsu (1791–1875) became a Japanese Buddhist nun and one of the country’s most respected female artists – combining her poetry, calligraphy, and pottery.  She learned from Kyoto potters and decorated her rough and rugged bowls, cups, and other vessels with her poetry, either painted on or scored into the clay in flowing calligraphy. Orders from tea masters and others kept her very busy.  This collage of found images shows both her pottery and calligraphy styles.




9 thoughts on “Zen In Hand

  1. Well!!!

    I found StepsandPauses in my junk mailbox!

    I wondered where it had gotten to. So many beautiful poems and images, Jazz.

    I love the way you put Sally to rest, glad that you appreciate the kinetic sculpture, that she is near it in my yard.

    And, the blanket poem about you mother is very special…in several ways.

    How fortunate I feel to share your travels through poetry.



    Liked by 1 person

  2. Reblogged this on One Woman's Quest and commented:
    A dear friend of mine passed away recently. She was a potter, and the gifts of her creations fill my home. This poem by Jazz J is as exquisitely crafted as Nadine’s works. I share it with you today to honour both women.


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