funnysteps > What is Kokin-wakashu?


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"Kokin-wakashu-" is one of collections of ancient and modern times Wakas.
The collection was sended to Japanese Emperor Daigo on 905
by the four selecters and waka poets, Tsurayuki Kino, Tomonori Kino, Mitsune Koushikouchi, and Tadamine Mibu.
This collection is the first collections of wakas which is ordered by the Emperor of Japanese.
It has 1150 wakas.

"Kokin" means" ancient and mordern times",
and "waka-shu" means "collection of wakas."
"Waka" is an old Japanese short poem which has its own styles.
When we make "Wakas", we use only 31 letters and use the old type of Japanese language.
They has 5 phrases, and each phrase has 5 letters, 7 letters, 5 letters, 7 letters, 7 letters.
We, Japanese, usually feel rythms in the series of 5 and 7 letters phrases.

"Tanka" has the same style as Waka, but when we make Tankas,
we use the modern type of Japanese language.
"Haiku" also has the similar style of poems, but we can use only 17 letters.
And we can use whichever types, old or modern, of Japanese.
"Haiku" has 3 phrases of 5 letters, 7 letters, 5 letters.

All these Japanese types of short poems are unique in the world.

I compose "Wakas," "Tankas," "Haikus," and other no style poems.
(And I also write novels in Japanese.)
I think the forms of poems are only the shapes of containers of words,
especially for Japanese, letters.
So Every time I compose my poem, I select the type of poems which suits my hearts the best.

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