sculpted by an artist’s hands
nothing of their touch
just a tiny trace of dew
or could it be a teardrop?
Kim M. Russell, 2017
Image found on Pinterest
My response to Carpe Diem #1156 Bonsai, the Japanese Tree-scaping Art
In another episode about Japanese art forms, Chèvrefeuille has given us some interesting background to Bonsai, the Japanese Art of Tree-scaping, in which artistically shaped miniature trees are grown in containers. Many Japanese cultural characteristics, in particular the influence of Zen Buddhism and the expression of Wabi-sabi, inform the Bonsai tradition in Japan. A number of other cultures around the globe have adopted the Japanese aesthetic approach to bonsai, and, while some variations have begun to appear, most hew closely to the rules and design philosophies of the Japanese tradition.
He says that, in Bonsai, the designer’s touch must not be apparent to the viewer. If a branch is removed in shaping the tree, the scar will be concealed. Likewise, wiring should be removed or at least concealed when the bonsai is shown, and must leave no permanent marks on the branch or bark. He links this to haiku when he says he doesn’t think it a great sin to find the poet in his/her haiku, but in a way it makes the haiku less strong and beautiful. On the other hand, haiku is written straight from the heart.