The Sakura Season is approaching

DC-Cherry Blossom

Cherry Blossoms seem especially suited to the ways of our country, with branches so gentle, flowers so delicate in shape, and hues so simple that the total effect is perfect beyond belief.”
Matsudaira Sadanobu (1758-1828)

The supposedly pure, unsullied “Japaneseness” of hauntingly evanescent, overpoweringly beautiful sakura has been a comfort and an inspiration to many down the centuries. “In ancient times,” wrote the nativist poet-scholar Kamo no Mabuchi (1697-1769), “people’s hearts were direct and straightforward. … When emotions rose up in their hearts they would put them into words and sing, and called this poetry. … But then the ideas and words of babbling China and India were blended together and introduced into our country. … Things became complex, so the hearts of those here who used to be straightforward … turned wicked. … In ancient poetry, though, the teachings and words composed by people 1,000 years ago remain completely unchanged with the passage of time, just as autumn leaves and cherry blossoms are the same now as in the past.”

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