The man with
A haiku master from Japan’s Edo period, Basho captured the world in a handful of syllables. We follow in the footsteps and words of the wandering poet, along the white paths of the island of Honshu, from Mount Haguro to Ichinoseki.
A place to write
I wrote a linked verse of eight pieces and hung it on a wooden pillar. The starting piece was: Behind this door Now buried in deep grass, A different generation will celebrate The Festival of Dolls.
Machiya, another of Kyoto’s treasures, are steeped in the same tranquility as the temples. The space inside these traditional, two-floor wooden townhouses seems to circulate in mysterious ways. Shiki-Juraku, west of the Imperial Palace, has 10 machiya in two facing rows, all with the simplest of furnishings. The guiding principle here was to create a harmonious visual design: ceramics matched to the colors of the flowers, a touch of indigo on a sofa. Which one to choose? Perhaps no. 10, for its beautiful cypress tub facing the veranda.
Texte Léa Outier
165, Konoe-cho, Aburanokoji-dori, Kyoto. Tél. +81 (0)75 417 0210.www.shikijuraku.com
Basho took to the road, “. . . already dreaming of the full moon rising over the islands of Matsushima,” and found himself facing the bay, one of the country’s most famous landscapes: “innumerable islands are scattered over it from one end to the other. Tall islands point to the sky and level ones prostrate themselves before the surges of water.” All the rooms of this ryokan overlook the archipelago. “The pines are of the freshest green, and their branches are curved in exquisite lines, bent by the wind constantly blowing through them.”
Texte Violaine Gérard
35-2, Matsushima. Tél. +81 (0)22 354 5065.www.new-komatsu.co.jp/en
With weary feet and rosy cheeks, pilgrims visiting the sacred Three Mountains of Dewa like to stay at this hundred-year-old ryokan built at the base of Mount Haguro. A medley of food and cozy nights atop a futon, to start fresh the next day.
Texte Léa Outier
115 Touge Haguro-machi, Tsuruoka-si, Yamagata-ken. Tél. +81 (0)235 62 2201.
Air France has 7 weekly flights from Paris-CDG to Tokyo-Narita.
Air France has 11 weekly flights from Paris-CDG to Tokyo-Haneda.
KLM has 7 weekly flights to Tokyo-Narita from Amsterdam.
Aéroport de Tokyo-Narita.
À 66 km de Tokyo.
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Journaux de voyage
Bashô, présentés et traduits du japonais par René Sieffert, éditions Verdier. © Éditions Verdier pour la traduction française, 2016.
The Narrow Road To The Deep North and Other Travel
Sketches by Matsuo Basho translated with an introduction by Nobuyuki Yuasa (Penguin Classics, 1966). Copyright © Nobuyuki Yuasa, 1966.
Gallimard, coll. Bibliothèque du voyageur.
coll. Guides bleus.
Le goût du Japon
Mercure de France, coll. Le petit mercure.
© Antoine Corbineau / Talkie Walkie. Map for illustration. Purpose only.