Cherry Blossom Forecast and World Order Videos


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The cherry blossoms are not showing yet where I am located. Some early plum, wild pear, and peach blossoms are beginning. My flowering quince, usually the earliest to bloom, is lagging. The buds are nice and fat and look ready to pop…The Japanese plum buds are much larger and a petal here and there can be seen. This cherry blossom forecast is for Japan. I am a little late posting it due to various life events, pneumonia, etc. The slide show is from photos from the past couple of years. I used to work in an office park where there were sixty-five cherry trees – my own private festival! Also, there are some short videos of my favorite guys, World Older. JATA – Japanese Association of Travel Agents – produced these videos showing parts of Japan. The music is hypnotic and the guys are showing more of their surroundings rather than the videos being about their choreography.

While there are all kinds of festivals and fun events going on, the time of cherry blossoms is always a solemn time for me. Even though I am excited to see their beauty after a long cold snowy winter, I still feel ..mono no aware…物の哀れ – the pathos of things; impermanence – 無常, mujō. These are feelings of a gentle sadness, wistfulness. The Samurai were also associated with sakura as their lives were so transient.

I hope you enjoy this mini-trip to Japan!

Updated February 19th, 2015 as Sakura Map has updated their cherry blossom forecast for 2015 sakura season. Just a reminder that these dates are the estimated opening date for cherry blossoms and full bloom should be around a week or so after.
Fukuoka | March 22
Matsuyama | March 25
Hiroshima | March 27
Miyajima | March 27
Kyoto | March 28
Osaka | March 27
Nara | March 29
Nagoya | March 25
Tokyo | March 26
Yokohama | March 26
Kanazawa | April 4
Sendai | April 10

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Weekend Groove

All those years ago
…so many miles between then and now
Wish I had a penny for every cherry blossom
petal that has fallen since then….
I’d be a zillionaire, y’know?

But now, all these years up to now
I hear this and I remember
all those petals falling
around us and this song
on the radio.
I taught you to cha-cha

All those years ago
if we had known how
fragile and swirling was time
and today,
how the wind blows those
small petals back
into the sky

Do they make it across the ocean?
Do they ever fall on your hair
or touch your skin
I’d be a zillionaire now
if I had a penny for every tear.

This version of this song is from the series, Live At Daryl’s House. Good series. If you haven’t done so, check out on YouTube.

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The Walk – Part X – Promises Kept

Several years ago, I had the privilege of reviewing the application for licensure in my state, a Japanese engineer from Fukushima, transferred to a branch of his company here in the States. After a rocky and difficult beginning, he finally realized and accepted what must be done to complete the process. After a time, he asked me to lunch because of the gratitude he had for the help I had given him. I told him I could not do that. he then asked, Would you go for a walk around the office park then, on your lunch break? I happily said yes because I had learned much about him and wanted to know more. He reminded me a great deal also, of a love that had come to an end when my Samurai returned to Japan. This began many walks and conversations on Friday of the weeks he was in town. I told him there were sixty-five cherry trees within the park and we visited them all. Our favorite place to walk and often sit and talk was under a few trees atop a small hill overlooking a pond. The series of poems about our friendship all begin with “The Walk” and the number in the series.

Spring day – cold, foggy, and grey
But clearing skies begin
Clouds running away
Yielding space to blue sky and sun.

Cool wind, the man and woman
Tug their jackets closely and
Walk to their place on the hill.
The small pond below is
Rippling in the wind.
The cherry trees are
Slowly opening their buds,
Unsure of spring.
They bloom here and there
In small clusters, still
Fearful of winter.

Pointing upward she said
“I told you they would
Bloom again.” He smiled.
“Do you always keep
Your promises?”
She smiled. “Yes. Especially
Promises about sakura and friendship.”
He glanced at
The branches of the
Cherry tree above. He reached
Up and pulled down a
Branch for her to better see.
The branch was full of blooms –
Pink and perfect.
They stood and gazed, rapt
At the beauty of it.
He looked down at her and sighed
And let the branch go.
“The blossoms are perfect.
All of them.”
He bowed to the tree.
He bowed to her,
Deeply with respect.
He touched her cheek.
He looked again at the branches
Above him with the blooms
She promised would come again.
He looked  into her eyes
And again, sighed.

copyright kanzensakura

copyright kanzensakura

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Spring is Sprung – Benedictine Spread


Perfect for spring and hot summer: a lovely green and full of the flavors of fresh veggies. Not vegan but vegetarian – this is a perfect dip or spread and is an excellent thing to keep I your fridge for all occasions.

Originally posted on kanzen sakura:

I don’t have a clue how this got the name.  I just know it is good – either as a sandwich spread or as a dip.  Pale green, vibrant with veggie flavor, just plain ol’ yum food.  I was introduced to this years ago by another Southern girl (from Kentucky).  Yeah, it can be a prissy girly shower type food, but…..from this non-prissy, logical, sci fi girl, it is also good for any occasion and any reason.

it is perfect for spring and hot summer – cukes, onion, cream cheese – oh my!  I like to make open faced sammiches with this spread on a nice hearty whole grain bread and topped with alfalfa sprouts or a bit of shredded lettuce.  it also is an excellent thing to stuff into hollowed out cherry tomatoes.

Try it.  You’ll like it.  If your onion is a bit strong, rinse thin slices or…

View original 110 more words

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Sumire – 澄玲 Voice of Jewels – tanka

This gallery contains 6 photos.

Today, Mary gives us the prompt of real beauty, savor it and share it. Click the link to learn more, and enjoy:   Many times, we tend to look at the large picture of beauty: sunrise, sunset, the ocean, a … Continue reading

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The Bridge

copyright kanzensakura March Sun

copyright kanzensakura
March Sun

March is the bridge
Between winter and spring.

On one side snows and cold winds blow,
Wind tears branches from trees
And steals kites, seizing them
Never to be seen again.
March skies may be blue
But the Sun residing there
Is a miser with its warmth.
Grass is crushed
From the weight of long lived snow
And sparrows’ songs are hushed.
On that side of the bridge
March is a ravening lion
Devouring hope with grinning mouth.

The other side whispers tales
Of breezes playing games with
Kites and sparrows in the
Bright blue skies,
Running races with drifting clouds
And rippling grass that no longer sleeps.
Truthful Sun tells no lies
And flings her gold coin warmth to all
Who hold out their hands.
On this side of the Bridge
March gambols like a lamb
Teasing us to follow –
Catch me if you can!
Robins run trying to catch the clouds
Then lift their wings like
Red breasted kites.
Sparrows laugh and rise to follow.

Today at dVerse Poets Pub, it’s all about the verbs, ’bout the verbs no treble….Anyway, for Meeting the Bar (MTB), Victoria wants us to use less adverbs and passive voices – to be more active.  Come visit us!

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Shining Wind


I began working on this poem last spring but had it in a “work on this later” file. Kathleen, our guest at dVerse Poets Pub came up with the wonderful prompt of March Winds. I had submitted early but my mind kept coming back to this and so, I pulled out a brush and soap and scrubbed it up some. Thank you Kathleen for this beautiful prompt and getting me going on this poem!  I love the Japanese words for Spring Wind (there are several) but to me this speaks so much of birth, renewal, joy…Kaze hikaru – shining wind. It is almost a holy breath in the way it is said and the naming of such a wind.

Flowering Cherry and Maples with Poem Slips, By Tosa Mitsuoki (approx. 1617-1691)

Flowering Cherry and Maples with Poem Slips, By Tosa Mitsuoki (approx. 1617-1691)

Shining Wind/Kaze Hikaru
Gone the bitter winter winds,
Gone the birds huddled in my flowering quince
Seeking shelter from cruel winter wind.
They have taken wing to the skies
In the shining winds of spring:
Kaze hikaru.

Gone the thieving winds,
Gone the hostile winds
Replaced by friendly winds
That beckon us to run and chase robins
These shining winds of spring:
Kaze hikaru.

Gone the punishing winds
Gone the freezing winds
Shivering bare branches
Now blooming with blossoms fetched
By the shining winds of spring:
Kaze hikaru.

Gone the forbidding winds
Gone the silencing winds
That take the words from our mouths
We speak and sing and whistle
In tune with the shining winds of spring:
Kaze hikaru


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