otagaki rengetsu

the poem on this tea bowl, by otagaki rengetsu, a zen buddhist nun (1791-1875) who supported herself with her pottery, poetry, and calligraphy, dug her own clay and made tea bowls inscribed with her poems in japanese women’s script, says:

a thousand grasses

run rampant in autumn

but to discover a

single sprout with two leaves:

the joy of spring!

the ceramic bowl was made by a zen student and friend of my uncle’s in berkeley. thanks to bill & connie for such a thoughtful gift


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