Every day is a journey, and the journey itself home.  –Bashō


In Anthony Madrid’s “Chicago-No-Hosomichi,” we are gifted with a haibun, a mix of travel diary and haiku in the tradition of the 17th century poet, Bashō. Madrid references Bashō’s nikki or poetic diary, “Oku no Hosomichi,” which means “narrow road to the interior” and his own essay/poem does just that. His thinking is laid bare through what might seem a trivial or small day’s journey: Honeylocust leaves, the leap in Chicago seasons, a poem he’s read and which acts as a textual spine like the “narrow road” of the body itself, a poem he’s writing, coffee shops and bookshops (and the people in them), poetry readings, and postage stamps. Simple things. Daily musings. It is in the details of the poet’s day that we subtly hear the frustrations in writing, the hope of weather, the joys through habit, the struggles or deliberations about marriage and human interactions—the deep and the swift. Enjoy the day, this mind, these wanderings.

–Lea Graham



Photo By: Stefano Corso